Skip to main content

Lacrosse provides positive interactions with police for Indigenous youth in Sudbury

Share

It was all about sportsmanship, culture and having fun with police officers when the Indigenous Youth Lacrosse Games came to a close at Laurentian University on Thursday night.

Children from age 5 to 17 learned about teamwork, enjoyed physical activity in a safe environment and experienced positive interactions with police.

“We always try and look for opportunities to build rapport, build trust, rebuild trust in some cases and what better way than in sport,” said Indigenous liaison officer Const. Darrell Rivers. “They get to see officers out of their uniform and understand that we’re just people too and we like to give back to the community and help as much as we can.”

Organized by the Greater Sudbury Police Service, in partnership with N’Swakamok Native Friendship Centre, Greater Sudbury Lacrosse Association, the City of Greater Sudbury and the Shkagamik-Kwe Health Centre, the idea was to give lacrosse lessons to Indigenous youth in Sudbury and to those in Manitoulin who made the trip into the city.

The games were divided into seven weekly sessions in honour of the seven grandfather teachings.

It was all about sportsmanship, culture and having fun with police officers when the Indigenous Youth Lacrosse Games came to a close at Laurentian University on Thursday night. (Ian Campbell/CTV News)

On the last day, youth were given the chance to play a fan favourite called ‘fishy-fishy’ – where the teachers are sharks and they have to evade being captured on the gym floor.

They were put through drills by coach Brendan Adair, which included working together and in pairs to get the ball into the net.

“A big portion of it was to get community members out and active, so getting out and getting active in a safe environment,” said N’Swakamok Native Friendship Centre’s Cheyenne King Wakegijig.

“It was a really wonderful project.”

“My favourite part about this was … the ‘fishy-fishy’ because I like to play games,” said 10-year-old Piitoweh Keeshig.

“It’s a good thing, like, I really want this program to happen next year because it was really fun and I got to meet a lot of people,” said nine-year-old Daxton Wabano.

He may not have to wait long. Sudbury police said they couldn’t be more pleased with how the program worked and that planning is already underway.

“It’s, you know, using lacrosse, the sport of lacrosse, to build relationships, but not only with each other, with ourselves in getting out and using play and sport,” said Deputy Chief Natalie Hiltz.

Awards were given in some categories including fastest runner and most improved.

It was all about sportsmanship, culture and having fun with police officers when the Indigenous Youth Lacrosse Games came to a close at Laurentian University on Thursday night. (Photo form video)

CTVNews.ca Top Stories

Some birds may use 'mental time travel,' study finds

Real quick — what did you have for lunch yesterday? Were you with anyone? Where were you? Can you picture the scene? The ability to remember things that happened to you in the past, especially to go back and recall little incidental details, is a hallmark of what psychologists call episodic memory — and new research indicates that it’s an ability humans may share with birds called Eurasian jays.

Stay Connected