New community resource promotes Aboriginal physical literacy

For many Indigenous peoples in Canada, the circle is used to represent countless aspects of human experience. From the unity of peoples to the movement of the seasons and cycles of life and death, the circle is central to a holistic vision of what it means to be human.

Now physical literacy joins the circle.

This summer’s publication of Aboriginal Communities: Active for Life places physical literacy at the heart of the holistic model of indigenous community health and wellness. The new sport development resource from Sport for Life and the Aboriginal Sport Circle promotes physical literacy and quality sport as means of increasing physical activity and community health for indigenous peoples across Canada.

Written as a first-person narrative, the booklet presents observations and reflections of a fictional community sport leader who describes the importance of physical literacy and community sport. Through the narrative, prospective coaches and leaders learn how to deliver developmentally-sound and culturally-appropriate coaching and sport programming for indigenous participants.

Engagement and input from indigenous community leaders – over 260 of them from across Canada were consulted – were central to the development of the resource and its companion workshop.

The resulting booklet and workshop reflect approaches and practices that will best support local community leaders, coaches, and other physical literacy champions in increasing the percentage of indigenous children who become physically literate and stay active for life.

Through greater physical literacy, it is also hoped that more indigenous athletes will eventually pursue high performance sport on the biggest national and international stages, such as the Olympics and the North American Indigenous Games.

How you can be involved

As the Aboriginal Communities resources are made available, the Aboriginal Sport Circle and Sport for Life are seeking community partners and individuals who want to help to make sport and physical activity more accessible and supportive of Aboriginal participants and athletes across Canada.

If you are interested in obtaining copies of Aboriginal Communities, or seeing a workshop delivered in your community, Sport for Life and the Aboriginal Sport Circle invite you to contact them. Training is also available if you are interested in becoming an Aboriginal Communities workshop learning facilitator.

To learn more, contact Emily Rand at Sport for Life or Heather Kaulbach at the Aboriginal Sport Circle. You can also stay updated on Aboriginal Communities events and workshop offerings or register for the Sport for Life newsletter.

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