Native Inter-Band Games

Par Chantal Cleary | déc. 14, 2015

The 2015 Native Inter-Band Games (NIBG) took place in Mashteuiatsh last summer, from July 2 to 10. In total, more than 950 athletes participated in the game’s latest edition, whose mission is to “provide Aboriginal youth the opportunity to develop within a structured sport and cultural context, their minds, their talents, their energies and aspirations of the best goals, thereby promoting their development.”[1] For an entire week, young people between the ages of 9 and 17 participated in sports competitions. The event’s programming also included social, cultural and prevention components featuring a host of activities to promote the adoption of a healthy and active lifestyle.

At the end of the week of competitions, the athletes and the communities were lauded for their exceptional participation and their achievements. Several personalities from the world of politics and sports, in a show of support for the organizers, participated in the NIBG opening and closing ceremonies or in organized activities in one or another of the program’s component. Among others, Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard and Olympic athlete Sylvie Bernier were present for the closing ceremony.

While holding Dr. Stanely Vollant’s staff of a thousand dreams (Innu Meshkenu), Ms. Bernier addressed the Chiefs, the decision-makers, the youths and their parents to emphasize that creating healthy environments was key to adopting healthy and active lifestyles. Speaking directly to the young athletes, she also insisted on the importance of dreams and believing in yourself, reminding them that she was once a young athlete who dreamed of competing in the Olympic Games. She also spoke about the importance of becoming role models for youths and all First Nations.

 The 2015 NIBG closed with a speech from Chief Gilbert Dominique, from the community of Mashteuiatsh, who stressed the importance of supporting this high-impact event for Aboriginal youths in Quebec. He also applauded the Quebec Premier’s presence at the Games, saying that it was the first time in the Games’ history that a Premier had participated. During his speech, Chief Dominique also addressed the provincial and federal representatives in attendance to remind them that financial assistance was critical to their ability to hold the Games every two year. Finally, the long anticipated moment arrived: Chief Dominique announced that the next community to host the 2017 Games would be the community of Wemotaci, a first for that community since the creation of the Games.


The FNQLHSSC wants to congratulate the community of Mashteuiatsh as well as all the other people who contributed to making the Games a success. Our hats also go off to the participating athletes and their crew. The FNQLHSSC encourages its First Nations youths and their parents to waste no time in adopting healthy and active lifestyles and invites families and the communities to create health-promoting environments so that the youths are ready for action when the community of Wemotaci welcomes them in 2017.

To learn the results of the competitions or for more information on the 2015 Native Inter-Band Games, visit