Sask Sport is launching a new program highlighting the achievements of Aboriginal athletes in the province.
The Aboriginal Champions Program has selected six individuals who are successful athletes, coaches and role models.
Sask Sport officials say they hope the champions will serve to inspire Aboriginal youth, as well as promote the benefits of sport.
The list includes:
• Metis paralympian Colette Bourgonje, who has won 10 medals at nine Paralympic Games.
• Golfer Bill Cameron Sr. of the Beardy’s and Okemasis First Nation, who won the 2005 and 2008 Saskatchewan Senior Men’s Golf Championships.
• Delvin Cappo of the Carry the Kettle First Nation, who is a provincial team member of the Saskatchewan Table Tennis Association
• Metis dual sport athlete Jacqueline Lavallee, a former Canada West soccer all-star and All-Canadian basketball, and national basketball coach
• Thunderchild First Nation basketball star Michael Linklater, a 2009-10 CIS basketball champion and University of Huskies captain.
• Teagan Marion of the James Smith First Nation, and a silver medalist at the 2010-11 Saskatchewan Ringette Championships.
Cheryl McCallum is the manager of aboriginal services and says she’s really inspired by the youth selected for the program.
McCallum says it’s important to showcase Aboriginal youth who have achieved so much at such a young age.
The program will feature the athletes on posters and in advertising, as well as other resources.