U15 and U17 divisions will compete to become Team BC for 2017 NAIG
March 21, 2016 – The Aboriginal Sport, Recreation and Physical Activity Partners Council (Partners Council) and its Provincial Aboriginal Soccer Committee are pleased to announce the bid to host the 2016 BC Aboriginal Soccer Championships has been awarded to the Prince George Native Friendship Centre (PGNFC), in partnership with the Charles Jago Northern Sport Centre. This event is scheduled to take place August 26 – 28, 2016 in Prince George, BC.
The 2016 BC Aboriginal Provincial Soccer Championships will serve as the Team BC Selection Event, whereby the winning Regional teams of the U15 and U17 divisions will earn the right to represent BC at the Toronto 2017 North American Indigenous Games (2017 NAIG).
“We are excited to have been selected as the host community partner for this elite provincial competition for Aboriginal athletes,” said PGNFC Executive Director, Barb Ward-Burkitt. “Together with our local community partners, we look forward to welcoming the Aboriginal youth soccer teams from across BC for a celebration of sport excellence and cultural pride.”
“It’s an honour for the Charles Jago Northern Sport Centre to be a partner of this top-level sporting event,” says UNBC President Daniel Weeks. “UNBC is proud of the connections we share with Aboriginal communities across the region we serve. To see an event celebrating Aboriginal excellence and success in Prince George is inspiring to our community.”
With the support of the Province of BC, grants are provided by the Partners Council to the Aboriginal communities that host events within the series of BC Aboriginal Championships and Athlete Development Camps. These annual events are an important component of the Partners Council’s Provincial Strategy as they support a coordinated Aboriginal Team BC program to better prepare athletes and coaches for upcoming NAIG and other elite competitions.
The 2016 BC Aboriginal Soccer Championships will feature Regional teams in the U15 (born 2001-2003) and U17 (born 1999-2000) age divisions for both male and female teams. Regional teams will be formed by the Partners Council’s six Regional Committees this spring in preparation for the competition. The Regional team selection events will be announced in April.
A U13 co-ed division will also be included in the Championships. As the U13 age category is not age-eligible for advancing to the 2017 NAIG, regional team qualifications are not required and this division will be open to any co-ed Aboriginal U13 team to enter and compete for the Provincial championship title.