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Aboriginal Sport and Wellness Council of Ontario – National Coaches Week an opportunity to recognize coaches and highlight Aboriginal Coaching Modules
September 28, 2018 Toronto, ON – The Aboriginal Sport and Wellness Council of Ontario (ASWCO) celebrated and recognized coaches this week, as a proud supporter of National Coaches Week, with 2018 marking the 13th year Coaches Week is celebrated in Ontario.
National Coaches Week was developed by the Coaching Association of Canada (CAC) to recognize the impact coaches can have on athletes and their communities, acknowledge the continuous efforts of coaches, and thank coaches for their dedication and hard work. The CAC offers a number of resources and programs to help coaches obtain necessary certifications, keep current and do the best job they can do – with a variety of easily accessible toolkits and training modules. One of the largest programs the CAC runs is the National Coaches Certification Program (NCCP).
Launched in 1974, the NCCP has been identified as a world leader in coach education. It is currently the largest adult continuing education program in Canada. The NCCP gives coaches the confidence to succeed and is designed and delivered in partnership with the government of Canada, provincial/territorial governments, and national/provincial/territorial sport organizations. As a designated Provincial/Territorial Aboriginal Sport Body (P/TASB), ASWCO works with partners such as the Coaches Association of Ontario and Provincial Sport Organizations, to encourage and support Indigenous coaches or individuals seeking coaching certification within Ontario, to find the programs and resources they need to succeed.

To further establish meaningful participation of Indigenous peoples in the NCCP, and to educate and promote the value of the NCCP, the Aboriginal Sport Circle (ASC) embarked on a multi-year process to develop supplemental training material for Aboriginal coaches taking NCCP workshops.

The result of this process is the Aboriginal Coaching Modules (ACM), which responds to the need for a national training curriculum with content that reflects the uniqueness of Aboriginal cultures, values, and lifestyles. “The Aboriginal Coaching Modules are so important, not just for Indigenous coaches but especially for non-Indigenous coaches. The ACM provides a more holistic and culturally relevant approach to coaching Indigenous athletes, taking into account the individual as a whole, and even the community perspective. In any type of training materials, but particularly when you’re training to support and motivate athletes, you need to be able to relate to the material, it needs to have a personal, cultural and social relevance,” says Keir Johnston, Manager of High Performance for ASWCO. “It makes a world of difference and benefits not only the coach and the athlete, but the entire team and community as well.”
To kick off Ontario Coaches Week, the Coaching Association of Ontario hosted the 2018 Ontario Coaching Excellence Awards this past Saturday, September 22. The event, hosted by CBC Sports Brenda Irving, celebrated the dedication and commitment of exemplary individuals who inspire, innovate and share knowledge of sport with others. The Awards, now in their 12th year, recognize the importance of leadership, performance and the value of human insight which are all integral to great coaching. This year, of particular significance to the Indigenous community was the Female Grassroots Coach Award, awarded to Meagan Wilson, originally from Six Nations of the Grand River, for her outstanding work in introducing the sport of Rugby to Indigenous Youth.
In addition to the NCCP and the ACM, there are a number of additional resources available for Coaches in Ontario, including the annual Ontario Coaches Conference, which brings together hundreds of coaches and sport leaders for multiple days of networking, hands on learning, and workshops with industry leading professionals. The conference is hosted by the Coaches Association of Ontario, a non-profit organization committed to ensuring coaches throughout Ontario have access to developmental workshops, clinics and resources. The 2019 Ontario Coaches Conference will be held April 5-7, 2019 at the Markham Marriott. Each year ASWCO selects five Indigenous coaches from across Ontario to attend the conference (with free conference admission and accommodations), through a nomination process slated to open in January. For more information about the Ontario Coaches Conference, visit
For Indigenous communities in Ontario interested in hosting a one-day ACM workshop and other NCCP Coaches Clinics, please visit or contact Mekwan Tulpin, Coordinator of High Performance at

ASWCO Quick Facts:
  • The Aboriginal Sport and Wellness Council of Ontario (ASWCO) is the designated Provincial/Territorial Aboriginal Sporting Body (P/TASB) for Ontario and serves all 133 First Nations, in addition to Inuit and Métis Peoples, living both on and off reserve, in urban and rural settings.
  • ASWCO’s mandate is to deliver sport and wellness programming that positively impacts the lives of Indigenous Peoples in Ontario.
  • ASWCO operates more than forty events on an annual basis, including multi-sport and leadership camps, the Ontario Native Basketball Invitational, the Ontario Native Volleyball Invitational, sport clinics, tryouts for Aboriginal Team Ontario, conferences, workshops and retreats.
  • ASWCO’s Standing Bear Youth Leadership program, developed in consultation with more than 550 youth across Ontario, is available for all Indigenous youth in Ontario, with a number of camps, conferences and workshops held throughout the year.
  • ASWCO is recognized by both the Aboriginal Sport Circle (ASC) and the North American Indigenous Games (NAIG) Council, as the designated sport body for Ontario in regards to selecting and managing teams for the National Aboriginal Hockey Championships (NAHC) and the NAIG.
  • ASWCO is funded primarily by the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport and the Government of Ontario.
ASWCO honours the traditional lands and homelands of all Indigenous Peoples and communities across the province of Ontario including First Nations, Inuit and Métis living both on and off reserve, in rural and urban communities.
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