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Search begins for Six First Nations Youth 2010 Olympic Torch Relay Flame Attendants and 41 First Nations Youth Language Torchbearers

by NationTalk on March 9, 2009977 Views

TORONTO, March 8 – National Chief Phil Fontaine announced in Toronto today that the Assembly of First Nations is seeking nominations for First Nations’ youth to be involved in the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Torch Relay, presented by Coca-Cola and RBC, and supported by the Government of Canada.”Six First Nations youth will have the honour of accompanying the Olympic Flame on its 106-day journey across Canada,” said National Chief Phil Fontaine. “Fire is a sacred element for First Nations peoples. These youth will be modern-day Fire-keepers. “At the same time, 41 youth from various First Nation language groups – whether it’s Algonquin, Ojibway, or Salish — will also be nominated by their communities as torchbearers.

“I am excited that our Peoples will be very much a part of the Olympic Spirit,” added National Chief Fontaine. “We hope the Olympic Flame will inspire our young people to be proud of their heritage and reach out to fulfill their dreams.”

The AFN Youth Council and the Chiefs Committee on Languages will be involved in the selection process. A list of names will the be submitted to VANOC. Flame Attendants must also take a physical fitness test and participate in a training program. The Torch Relay will be traveling through over 100 First Nations communities. Each community will also have the opportunity to select a torchbearer.

The Youth Flame Attendants and Youth Language Torch Bearers will be announced at the AFN Annual General Assembly in Calgary, July 21-23.

The Royal Bank of Canada and Coca-Cola also participated in today’s announcement. As the official Olympic Torch Relay partners, RBC and Coca-Cola are seeking Aboriginal participants as well. For Coca-Cola you can sign up at icoke.ca, or for youth between the ages of 13 – 19, through Sogoactive.com.

“RBC is proud to sponsor the AFN Inter-Nation Trade and Economic Summit and the 2010 Olympic Torch Relay – both celebrate universal values and will make a profound impact on many Canadians.” said Harry Willmot, Sr. Manager, Aboriginal Market Development . “It’s important to RBC and Coca-Cola that Olympic Torchbearers represent the diverse communities and cultures of Canada, particularly Canada’s First Nations. We encourage Aboriginal people across Canada to take this opportunity to represent their community by making a pledge at rbc.com/carrythetorch or going to icoke.ca.”

MEDIA EVENT and PHOTO OPPORTUNITY WITH OLYMPIC TORCH

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For further information: Bryan Hendry, Senior Policy Advisor, Economic Partnerships, On site Cell (613) 293-6106, bhendry@afn.ca

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