Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Canadian Heritage, announced an additional $1.1 million for the 2022 Canada Summer Games Host Society in the Niagara Region. This funding will help cover additional costs due to the postponement of the Games and impacts of COVID-19. The Games, which were originally planned for the summer of 2021, were rescheduled to August 6 to 21, 2022.
The Canada Summer Games are a significant contributor of talent for Canada’s Olympic Team. During the last Summer Olympics held in 2016, Canada Games alumni contributed to 14 of the 22 medals that our country won, and 23 of the 63 Canadian athletes who brought home medals from Rio 2016 previously competed at the Canada Games.
In Tokyo this year are Adriana Leon and Shelina Zadorsky, Canada Games alums playing for the Canadian Women’s Soccer Team that beat the US. Sprinter Andre DeGrasse medaled in the 2013 Sherbrooke Games.
Said St Catharines MP Chris Bittle,“When Niagara was awarded the 2021 Canada Summer Games in 2017, no one expected the enormous challenges the COVID-19 pandemic would create as the Host Society prepares to host this once-in-a-lifetime event in our community. From the difficult decision to delay the games to the delays in construction caused by the pandemic, additional costs would certainly change the Games. This funding will help ensure that Niagara hosts the best Canada Summer Games possible and that the success of the event is not limited due to the challenges of the global pandemic.”
The Canada Summer Games were originally scheduled to be held in the Niagara Region, from August 6 to 22, 2021. More than 5000 participants from all provinces and territories are expected to compete in 18 sports.
The Government of Canada had committed an initial amount of $11.422 million to support the 2022 Canada Games Host Society. This includes $1.072 million to support a pilot project to add box lacrosse to the Games. Lacrosse is the oldest organized sport in North America and has been played by Indigenous peoples for centuries.
In 2020, the 2022 Canada Games Host Society signed a memorandum of understanding with a newly formed Indigenous Partnership Council that will aim to reinforce the presence and engagement of Indigenous communities in the events leading up to and during the 2022 Canada Summer Games.