The Kamloops Legacy Performance Games will include disability sports thanks to provincial government funding, announced Kamloops-North Thompson MLA Terry Lake today, on behalf of Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development Bill Bennett.
The government of British Columbia and several Disability Sport Organizations have agreed to partner with Kamloops to pilot disability sport programming at the 2014 Kamloops Legacy Performance Games.
Over the next three years, the government of B.C. has allotted $75,000 annually for new disability event opportunities. The Kamloops Legacy Performance Games are a good fit with a number of sports and a negotiated portion of the $75,000 will be made available over the next three years as a pilot. Amounts will be dependent on the number of sports represented. The Kamloops Sports Council is continuing to work with Disability Sport Organizations to identify opportunities.
The Kamloops Legacy Games are a result of the 2011 Western Canada Summer Games. The games are meant to provide multisport competition opportunities for athletes who miss out on other competitions because they don't fit the age categories or because their sports are not included.
The Kamloops Legacy Performance Games will run June 27-30, 2013 as a test event and will feature power soccer and wheelchair rugby as well as seven able-bodied sports. The first biannual Legacy Performance Games will take place in 2014.
Terry Lake, MLA for Kamloops-North Thompson -
"The Kamloops Legacy Performance Games represent a perfect development opportunity for a multisport competition for disability sports, filling a gap in B.C.'s sportscape. We are proud to support an innovative new competition and we know that with Kamloops' enthusiastic sport culture and extensive volunteer base, the Legacy Performance Games will take root and grow, providing many more sport opportunities for British Columbians."
Henry Pejril, president, Kamloops Sports Council -
"At the Kamloops Legacy Performance Games, we are very excited to have the support of the Province in helping athletes with physical disabilities to gain opportunities to increase their skill and experience through competition. The vision of the Legacy Performance Games is to support long term athlete development in the province and to showcase our amazing facilities in Kamloops, Canada's Tournament Capital."
Gail Hamamoto, executive director, BC Wheelchair Sports Association -
"BC Wheelchair Sports greatly appreciates the support of the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development in providing funding to the Kamloops Legacy Performance Games for athletes with a disability. This support is critical in ensuring equitable opportunities at multisport games in British Columbia that meet the needs of our future Paralympians. We thank both the provincial government and the Kamloops Legacy Performance Games for their commitment to addressing this gap in the long term athlete development model for athletes with a disability, and look forward to a very positive partnership."
- Disability sports at the 2013 test event will include wheelchair rugby and power soccer. Able-bodied sports will include cycling, canoe and kayak, wrestling, and beach volleyball.
- The event is expected to grow to include up to 15 sports and 2,000 athletes.
- The Legacy Games will be held every two years, starting in 2014.
Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development