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Akwesasne/Cornwall, Ontario
April 27 - May 3, 2003 

Event Profile 

The Aboriginal Sport Circle, Canada’s national voice for Aboriginal sport and
recreation, is pleased to present the 2003 National Aboriginal Hockey Championships.
The following information offers a basic overview of the event, technical guidelines and
specific criteria for team selections. Should you require further details on the
Championships, or require more information about the Aboriginal Sport Circle, please
contact our offices at (613) 938-1176. 


The Aboriginal Sport Circle (ASC) was established to promote personal
excellence through sport and to support the holistic development of Aboriginal
athletes and coaches. As a program of the ASC, the National Aboriginal Hockey
Championships reflect those priorities while serving as the premier competition
for minor level Aboriginal hockey in Canada. 

The National Aboriginal Hockey Championships (NAHC) provide a forum for elite
Bantam/Midget age Aboriginal hockey players, which attracts participation from
First Nations, Inuit and Metis within each of the thirteen provinces and territories
of Canada. The long-term vision for the NAHC is to establish a competitive
structure that will serve as the impetus for grassroots and regional Aboriginal
hockey development. The event will help foster cultural unity and pride and
celebrate the athletic abilities of Aboriginal athletes from across the country.


The NAHC embodies shared traditional Aboriginal principles that encourage
holistic approaches to the personal development of all participants (athletes,
coaches, team staff and officials). The Championships take a balanced
approach that supports the physical, mental, spiritual, and cultural aspects of life. 
For this reason, the NAHC will include the meaningful involvement of Elders and
cultural components throughout the tournament program. 

The NAHC are designed as an elite, all-star format where the best
Bantam/Midget age hockey players are selected to compete on behalf of their
provinces and territories. The event is inclusive, which means anyone of
Aboriginal ancestry, whether First Nations (status or non-status Indian), Inuit or
Metis, is eligible to compete. 

The Championships promote drug and harassment free sport. Therefore a strict
“zero tolerance” policy is adopted. The use of alcohol, tobacco (non-ceremonial),
performance enhancing substances and any acts of discrimination are strictly

Location & Dates 

The 2003 NAHC will be held in Akwesasne Mohawk Territory and the
neighboring city of Cornwall, Ontario, April 27 – May 3, 2003. The competition
will span seven days with both the male and female championship games being
held on Saturday, May 3rd.

Travel Dates 

Akwesasne/Cornwall, Ontario, is located on the St. Lawrence River straddling the
Ontario, Quebec and New York State Borders. It is approximately 75 minutes
from both the Ottawa and Montreal Airports. Travel to the 2003 NAHC has been
designated for April 25th-26th and departure on May 4th.

Community Snap Shot 

Akwesasne Mohawk Territory is approximately 80 kilometres in total area with a
population of about 13,000 people. Akwesasne is an international community
comprised of four residential districts, which are located in within the borders of
Ontario, Quebec and the State of New York. The adjoining city of Cornwall has a
population of 47,000 people. Both communities have a long-standing reputation
for supporting amateur sport, hosting an average of 70 events and tournaments
each year. 


Two arenas will be used for the 2003 NAHC. The A’nowara’ko:wa Arena, located
on Cornwall Island, is a state of the art facility built by Akwesasne seven (7) years
ago. The 39,000 square foot arena is designed in the shape of a turtle. It has an
NHL size ice surface and seats 2,500 spectators. Immediately across the river
from the A’nowara’ko:wa Arena is the Cornwall Civic Complex and Convention
Centre. It is located in Cornwall’s downtown core. The complex has an NHL size
rink, which seats up to 5,500 spectators. Each facility is within a ten-minute drive
from the other.

Accommodations, Travel & Food 

Each team is responsible for arranging and paying for their own
accommodations, travel and food. All hotels are located within a 10-15 minute
drive from the arenas. To simplify team reservations, the Aboriginal Sport Circle
has block booked rooms in hotels/motels throughout Cornwall. A detailed listing
of available rooms and rates are available through the Aboriginal Sport Circle.

Technical Guidelines and Criteria

Team Selections 

The NAHC are designed as an All Star tournament. As such, each
Provincial/Territorial Aboriginal Sport Body (P/TASB) is responsible for
developing and conducting a region wide team selection process (i.e. talent
identification camps) to determine its team roster. Each P/TASB is also directly
responsible for submitting team registrations to the ASC and coordinating travel
to the Championships. 

In preparing for the event, it is recommended that each P/TASB establish working
partnerships with their provincial/territorial hockey branch and government. 



Teams must be comprised only of players and coaches who are of Aboriginal
ancestry. Every player and coach must carry with her/him documentation that
verifies her/his Aboriginal ancestry. In most cases, picture ID along with a Status
Card, Inuit Card or Metis Membership Card will be adequate. In cases where the
participant is non-status (Indian), an ANCESTRY FORM must be completed,
which documents their lines of descent, authenticated and endorsed by the
parent(s) or guardian, coach and P/TASB, and submitted to the ASC at the Team
Roster Deadline. 

Age Categories

Male Division: 

Male teams are restricted to using Bantam and Midget age players as of the
2002/2003 hockey season - born in the years of 1985 to 1989.

Female Division: 

Female teams are restricted to using Bantam and Midget age players as of the
2002/2003 hockey season - born in the years of 1985 to 1989. An exception is
made in the female division, which allows teams to carry a maximum of five (5)
overage players born in the years of 1981 to 1984.

School Enrollment

All players participating in the 2003 NAHC must be enrolled in school and/or have
completed the necessary requirements for their high school diploma (or the

Participant Restrictions

Teams are prohibited from selecting players who have played ten (10) or more
regular season league games in Major Junior “A”

Teams are prohibited from selecting players who’s club teams are competing at
a CHA Branch Regional or National Championship held on dates which
coincide with the 2003 NAHC

All players and coaches must be registered with their CHA Branch prior to
trying out for their Province/Territory


All players and coaches must hold permanent residency in the Province/Territory
for which he/she competes. Exceptions are made for players who attend school
on a full-time basis in another P/T. In such cases, the player can choose to
compete for either his/her home P/T, or the P/T where he/she attends school. In
cases where a player competes for the P/T where he/she attends school, a
completed RESIDENCE DECLARATION FORM must be endorsed by the
parent(s) or guardian, coach and P/TASB and submitted to the ASC at the Team
Roster Deadline. 

Minimum Certification Standards for Coaches

Each team’s Head Coach must possess a minimum of Intermediate Level CHA
certification. All Assistant Coaches must possess a minimum of Coach Level
CHA certification. Proof of certification will be required upon submission the

Each female team is required to have a minimum of one female coach (either as
an assistant or Head Coach) on the bench at all times. 

Head Coaches that don’t have proper certification but have experience coaching
at the National, Professional and/or Major Jr. “A” level may apply to the ASC for
Special Exemption.

Policy on Drug and Harassment Free Sport 

The Aboriginal Sport Circle promotes drug and harassment free sport. 
Therefore, a strict “zero tolerance” policy has been adopted for the 2003 NAHC. 
All participants are strictly prohibited from the use of alcohol, tobacco
(non-ceremonial) and performance enhancing substances. Any acts of
harassment or discrimination will not be tolerated. 

All participants (players and team staff) registering for the 2003 NAHC are
required to sign a CODE OF CONDUCT FORM, which outlines in detail the drug
and harassment policies enforced at the tournament.

Please Note:

Each P/TASB must implement a screening process, which includes
conducting Police Records Check on all team staff members (coaches,
managers, trainers and chaperones). Staff that have not submitted to or
passed a Police Records Check, prior to the Team Roster Deadline, are not
eligible to participate in the 2003 NAHC.


Each P/TASB is responsible for submitting all the necessary forms and fees to
the Aboriginal Sport Circle. To be eligible to compete at the 2003 NAHC, teams
must abide by the following processes and deadlines: 

Team Registration Deadline (November 1, 2002)

All P/TASB intending on sending teams to the 2003 NAHC must submit a TEAM
REGISTRATION FORM (one per team) to the ASC on or before November 1,
2002. The Team Bond must also be submitted at this deadline (see Team Bond
for details). 

Team Roster Deadline (April 11, 2003)

Teams that have met the Registration deadline must submit their TEAM
ROSTERS FORMS and all applicable PARTICIPANT FORMS to the ASC on or
before April 11, 2003. All Forms must be completed in full and include all
necessary signatures of authorization. Teams that fail to meet the deadline will
forfeit the entire amount of their team bond fee. 

Team Bond ($250.00)

Rather than imposing a registration fee, a Team Bond has been established in
the amount of $250 per team. The bond is mandatory for each team to pay and
must accompany Team Registrations, which are due on November 1, 2002. The
bond will serve to secure each team’s position in the tournament and will be
reimbursed in full upon arrival at the event. 

Team Rosters 

Each team shall consist of the following: 

20 players (4 forward lines, 3 defensive lines and 2 goalies)
4 Alternates (3 players and a goaltender)
1 Manager
1 Head Coach
2 Assistant Coaches (maximum)
1 Trainer/Equipment Manager 

Technical Information (General) 


As an event sanctioned by the Canadian Hockey Association, the NAHC will
operate in strict accordance with the rules and regulations established for
national championships. The detailed Technical Package will be distribution to all
Provincial/Territorial Aboriginal Sport Bodies.

Competition Format

Through a preliminary ranking process, teams will be divided into an A and B
pool. Each team will compete in a round-robin format within its pool. Upon
completing the round robin, the teams finishing in first and second place in each
pool advance to the semi-finals (four teams in total). The top place team from
Pool A and B will crossover to play the second place team from the opposite
pool. The two winning teams will advance to the championship final, while the
losing teams will compete in the Bronze medal game.

Team Uniforms

Each team will be supplied with a set of jerseys and socks. Team colour
combinations will be assigned through the Aboriginal Sport Circle.

Protest Committee

Prior to the tournament, a Protest Committee will be established to accept and
rule on protests arising from competition. The Committee will be comprised of
individuals representing the following groups: Referees, the Host Organizing
Committee, All Star Evaluation/Selection Committee and the NAHC Board of

Any inquires or protests relating to ancestry are the responsibility of the NAHC
Board of Governors to review and make a ruling. 


The players and staff (coaches, managers and trainers) of the top three female
and male teams will receive medallions (gold, silver and bronze respectively). The
female and male teams that win the overall championship will have the name of
their Province/Territory engraved on the Turtle Island Cup. 

All Star Selection Process 

(2003 National Aboriginal Hockey Training Camp) 

The ASC’s National Aboriginal Hockey Program consists of two annual
initiatives; the National Aboriginal Hockey Championships and the National
Aboriginal Hockey Camp. Each year an independent scouting committee will
select 17 female and 17 male all stars from the NAHC. These all stars will be
invited to attend the National Aboriginal Hockey Camp. Six additional male and
female players will be identified to attend the Camp at their expense. Each
P/TASB is also invited to select one (1) coach to attend the Camp as a
participant in the ASC’s Coach Mentorship Program. For 2003, the site and
dates for National Aboriginal Hockey Camp have yet to be determined. 

Further details on the camp can be attained through the Aboriginal Sport Circle. 

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Last modified: January 19, 2006