Sam Laskaris

B.C. teams look ahead to North American Indigenous Games in Halifax

Nuu-chah-nulth athletes still have opportunities to earn spots to represent British Columbia at this year’s North American Indigenous Games (NAIG).

The multi-sport games, scheduled for July 15-23, will primarily be staged in the Nova Scotia capital of Halifax.

The city of Dartmouth and the Millbrook First Nation will also be hosting some of the competitions.

An estimated 5,000 athletes, aged 13-19, are expected to participate at the NAIG. They will be representing 26 provinces, territories, states or regions throughout Canada and the United States.

Tseshaht member to compete at World Games

A passion for running has paid off for a Tseshaht First Nation member.

Jolyn Watts, who is 27, has been selected to compete at this year’s Special Olympics World Games in Berlin, Germany.

The multi-sport games will run June 17-25.

Watts will represent Canada in 800-metre and 1,500-metre races.

“I’m really happy and really excited,” Watts said of the upcoming meet, which will mark her international debut.

Tla-o-qui-aht basketball teams seek success at Junior All-Native Tournament

Cindy Ross is hoping experience her players gained at the 2022 Junior All-Native Tournament (JANT) will pay off at this year’s event.

Ross is the head coach of the Tla-o-qui-aht Qu?usin’mit, a boys’ under-17 squad that is expected to fare well at the 2023 tourney, scheduled for March 19-24 in Nanaimo.

Snunymuxw First Nation will play host to the event, which will feature Indigenous squads from across the province competing in both girls’ and boys’ divisions at the under-13 and under-17 levels.

Funding will allow for upgrade at Fair Harbour’s marine dock

A vital hub on Vancouver Island’s northwest coast will soon be getting a major facelift.

That’s because the past-its-prime marine dock at Fair Harbour, a key access point to Kyuquot Sound, will be replaced later this year with a new full-service marine dock.

The Fair Harbour Marina and Campground is owned and operated by the Ka:'yu:'k't'h'/Che:k'tles7et'h' First Nations (KCFN).

The facility provides access to 10 marine parks, managed provincially or federally, within the region.

It also supports tour operators and area residents with supplies and services.

Siren installed to alert Hot Springs Cove of emergencies

Members of the Hesquiaht First Nation are a little less fretful these days.

That’s because officials from their community have taken some recent measures to better prepare for any possible disasters.

Back in 1964 the Hesquiaht community of Hot Springs Cove was virtually destroyed after an Alaskan earthquake, which measured 9.2 on the Richter scale. That earthquake created a tsunami and when it reached British Columbia’s west coast. It wiped out almost all homes in the Hot Springs Cove community.

Luckily, no Hesquiaht lives were lost that day.

Hesquiaht Descendants hoping for success at All Native Basketball Tournament

Mariah Charleson and her Hesquiaht Descendants teammates are pretty pumped.

That’s because it’s almost time for them to compete in the All Native Basketball Tournament (ANBT).

The Descendants are one of 16 squads that will participate in the women’s division of the ANBT, the prestigious Indigenous hoops event which has been staged annually in Prince Rupert since 1960.

The 2021 tourney, however, was cancelled because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tseshaht Pride finish second at Junior All Native Basketball Tournament

After six years at the Junior All Native Basketball Tournament (JANT), Joe Charleson Jr. managed to lead a squad to a podium finish.

Charleson has been a familiar face at the prestigious youth hoops event, which attracts Indigenous clubs from across British Columbia.

Charleson coached the Tseshaht Pride, a girls’ under-17 squad, to a second-place finish in its division at this year’s tournament, which was held in Kelowna and wrapped up on Friday (March 25).

New fund will assist Nuu-chah-nulth businesses seeking large loans

Officials with the Nuu-chah-nulth Economic Development Corporation (NEDC) can now start assisting some businesses with grand and costly plans.

Established in 1984, the NEDC is an Aboriginal Financial Institution (AFI) which has been providing loans to small- and medium-sized Indigenous businesses throughout Vancouver Island.

Earlier this month it was announced that $10 million had been advanced to the NEDC through the Indigenous Growth Fund (IGF), a new initiative created and managed by the National Aboriginal Capital Corporations Association (NACCA).

Alberni girls head into provincial championships with 20-2 record

Ryan Broekhuizen can vividly recall the last time the Alberni Armada had captured a major girls’ basketball championship.

A senior girls’ squad representing Alberni District Secondary School (ADSS), captured the Vancouver Island championship way back in 1987.

“It was 35 years ago,” Broekhuizen said. “I graduated from high school that year.”

Fast forward to 2022 and Broekhuizen, an ADSS alumnus, is now the head coach of the Armada, a squad that features his daughter Jordyn as its star point guard and top point-getter.

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