By TRT Staff with notes from onbi.iswo.ca
MISSISSAUGA – on January 25, Indigenous Sport & Wellness Ontario (ISWO) unveiled the Ontario Native Basketball Invitational (ONBI), set to take place from May 17-19, 2024, at Brock University in St. Catharines, Ontario.
The invitational tournament will bring together Indigenous youth basketball teams from across the province for a spirited competition, fostering friendship, community strength, and personal growth once again. Having held last years tournament in March, the ONBI will return to provide a platform for youth aged 13-18 to engage in friendly yet competitive matches. Beyond the court, the tournament features cultural and leadership activities designed to build confidence and create lasting connections.
Leading up to the ONBI, ISWO has joined forces with Rez Hoops for a preliminary tournament on Feb. 9-11, 2024, at the Dijon Youth and Elders Centre in Ohsweken on Six Nations. According to the Six Nations Basketball Facebook page, Six Nations Basketball is dedicated to offering “kids and youth with an opportunity to play hoops in Southern Ontario, Western New York, Michigan and Ohio.” The top 3 teams in each division of this event will receive travel assistance and entry fees to attend ONBI.
In collaboration with Moose Cree First Nation, ISWO is also proud to support the James Bay Invitational All-Indigenous Basketball Tournament in Timmins, Ontario, taking place from Jan 26-28. Top-performing teams in the 18U and 15U male and female divisions will be sponsored by ISWO to attend the Ontario Native Basketball Invitational.
Adding to the anticipation, ISWO is organizing the 2nd Annual Northern Ontario Indigenous Basketball Tournament on Feb. 24th & 25th at Cambrian College in Sudbury, ON. Divisions for this tournament include Masters Male & Female, U18 Male & Female, and U12 Male & Female. Following the event, the Sudbury 5 will host the Indigenous Heritage game at Sudbury Arena, showcasing and celebrating the rich Indigenous culture and talent in the region.
The Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport supports the Ontario Native Basketball Invitational, providing $1.3 million in crucial support for ISWO’s ongoing sport programs and tournaments through annual funding.
ISWO invites media representatives, community members, and basketball enthusiasts to join in celebrating the Ontario Native Basketball Invitational, a vibrant showcase of talent, culture, and community spirit.
According to the ISWO website, registration for the ONBI may be done as a team, through the coach, or as individual players who will be assigned to a team. All players, whether registering individually or as part of a team, must create an account and submit the required information, including emergency contact information, health information and sign-off on waivers.
Payment can be made by individual athletes or by the coach for the entire team. Payment options include payment online by a credit card, by e-transfer, or by certified cheque/money order (detailed instructions and prompts are included in the registration system).