The BC Games Society is rallying behind the City of Maple Ridge following cancellation of this year’s summer games due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Province, through the society, is providing $125,000 to support local sport and community development projects and ensure people will still benefit from the city being chosen to host the BC Summer Games.
Read more about the BC Summer Games: https://www.bcgames.org/Games/BC-Summer-Games
“Cancelling the Games was a very hard but necessary decision. I know how much time and effort goes into the planning process,” said Lisa Beare, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture. “Although the Games did not take place, we are proud to ensure that the work to prepare is not lost and the sport, arts and community organizations in Maple Ridge can benefit from the legacy funding.”
Alison Noble, president and CEO, BC Games Society, said, “We are very pleased that Maple Ridge will benefit from a BC Games legacy. This funding will allow for a lasting positive impact in the community and is an acknowledgement of the tremendous work that the volunteers had put into the planning of what would have been a very successful BC Summer Games.”
The Province and BC Games Society are also announcing the unveiling of the Karina LeBlanc Game Changer Award. The award will recognize a local athlete or young volunteer living in the Games’ host community who has demonstrated commitment to breaking down barriers and providing people with opportunities to participate in sport. The first award will be presented in the fall.
LeBlanc is a retired Olympic bronze medallist and professional athlete. She had a prestigious career in soccer that spanned almost 18 years at the international level, participated in five FIFA (Fédération Internationale de Football Association) World Cups and two Olympic Games.
“I’m honoured to have this award created in my name and to see more people recognizing and working hard to remove barriers in sport,” LeBlanc said. “For me, sport has been a game changer in my life to be the woman I am today, and I want sport to be that opportunity for others. When we make sport more accessible to people from all walks of life, everyone wins.”
The BC Games brings valuable competitive opportunities for British Columbia’s best young athletes, develops coaches and officials, helps volunteers gain valuable skills, attracts local tourism and provides direct economic benefits to the host community.
- The Province invests close to $50 million in sport annually, including $2 million to the BC Games Society to support the BC Summer Games and BC Winter Games, and to prepare for Team BC participation at the Canada Games.
- Each edition of the BC Games brings $1.6 million to $2 million in economic benefits to the host community.
- The BC Games are held every two years. Greater Vernon will host the 2022 BC Winter Games, Prince George will host the 2022 BC Summer Games and Maple Ridge will host the 2024 BC Summer Games.