Musqueam and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations share in the 2010 Winter Olympic Legacy

With the 2010 Winter Olympics just around the corner, the Musqueam and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations now have the opportunity to enjoy their own “Olympic Moment.”

On June 13, 2008, Canada and the two First Nations signed historic Olympic Legacy Agreements. The agreements will ensure that members of the Tsleil-Waututh and Musqueam First Nations share in the economic, social and cultural benefits of hosting the 2010 Winter Games.

Through the sounds of drums and applause, Musqueam Chief Ernest Campbell and Tsleil-Waututh Chief Leah George-Wilson spoke to their communities about the immense opportunity that the legacy agreements provide.

Indian and Northern Affairs Minister Chuck Strahl, Chief Leah George-Wilson and Chief Len George
Tsleil-Waututh Chief Leah George-Wilson raises the Tsleil-Waututh First Nation's Olympic Legacy Agreement as Indian and Northern Affairs Minister Chuck Strahl and Tsleil-Waututh Hereditary Chief Len George look on.

“Tsleil-Waututh welcomes all athletes, participants and visitors to our territory to celebrate the 2010 Games,” said Chief Leah George-Wilson. “Our culture, our land and our people are our most valuable assets. This legacy will enable us to repatriate some of the land that is critical to us for our community's future.”

The First Nations will be able to use the legacy funds for the acquisition of lands, capacity building, business development, skills enhancement and other economic development opportunities. Both First Nations will be able to decide how they want to share in the 2010 legacy for their current and future generations.

“The Musqueam people are proud to welcome the Olympics, and the world, to our traditional territory,” said Chief Campbell. “This honourable agreement will help us build a stronger, healthier community and ensure that current and future generations of the Musqueam people, will share in the legacy of the Olympics.”

Indian and Northern Affairs Minister Chuck Strahl and Chief Ernest Campbell
Indian and Northern Affairs Minister Chuck Strahl congratulates Musqueam Chief Ernest Campbell on the signing of the Musqueam First Nation's Olympic Legacy Agreement.

The Musqeuam and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations, along with the Lil'Wat and Squamish, are collectively known as the Four Host First Nations, and will host most of the 2010 events on their asserted traditional land. The contributions and support from the Four Host First Nations during the 2010 Winter Olympic bid process played a key role in Canada being awarded the Games. The Olympics represents a major opportunity to share Aboriginal traditions and culture with the world.