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Who are the Métis?

The Métis are one of the three distinct groups of Aboriginal peoples in Canada. Historically, the Métis were descendants of the 18th- and early 19th-century Europeans and First Nations women in mid-Western Canada.
For more information about Métis in Canada, please visit the Métis National Council.

What does Indigenous mean?

The Canadian Government recognizes Aboriginal people in Canada – First Nations, Inuit and Métis – as Indigenous peoples.
According to the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Peoples, there are over 370 million Indigenous people around the world.
Varying definitions for this term exist, however VANOC has adopted the inclusive UN understanding of Indigenous peoples, which is based on the following criteria:

  • Self-identification as indigenous peoples at the individual level and accepted by the community as their member
  • Historical continuity with pre-colonial and/or pre-settler societies
  • Strong links to territories and surrounding natural resources
  • Distinct social, economic or political systems
  • Distinct language, culture and beliefs
  • Form non-dominant groups of society
  • Resolve to maintain and reproduce their ancestral environments and systems as distinctive peoples and communities

I have an Aboriginal business. How can I get involved?

Our procurement policy encourages Aboriginal businesses to bid on contracts and to submit their company information to our procurement database.
We encourage all Aboriginal businesses to visit the 2010 Commerce Centre to find out about business opportunities, download the 2010 Business Opportunities Guide and sign up for e-mail alerts about goods and services contracts related to the Games.

FAQ: Who are the Inuit?

The Inuit are one of the three distinct groups of Aboriginal peoples in Canada. Approximately 56,000 Inuit live in Canada, primarily located in four regions of the Canadian Arctic: Nunatsiavut (Labrador), Nunavik (northern Québec), Nunavut, and the Inuvialuit region in the Northwest Territories.
The word Inuit means the people in Inuktitut, the Inuit language, and is the term by which Inuit refer to themselves. The term Eskimo, applied to Inuit by European explorers, is no longer used in Canada.
For more information about Inuit in Canada, please visit Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami.

I am an Aboriginal athlete. What are the opportunities for me?

If you are currently competing at an elite level and are interested in seeing if you have what it takes to compete at the Olympic level in a winter sport, please visit Own the Podium 2010 for information.
If you are not yet at the elite level, watch for our Aboriginal Youth Olympic Sports Challenge camps. For more information, please visit our Sport page.

Who are First Nations peoples?

First Nations (or Indian) peoples are one of the three distinct groups of Aboriginal peoples in Canada.
First Nations came into common usage in the 1970s to replace the word “Indian,” which some people found offensive. It has also been used to replace the term “Indian Band” in many communities.
For more information about First Nations peoples in Canada, please visit the Assembly of First Nations.

What does Aboriginal mean?

In Canada, the term Aboriginal is used to describe the descendants of the original inhabitants of North America. Canada's Constitution recognizes three distinct groups of Aboriginal peoples: Indian*, Inuit and Métis. These are three separate peoples, each with distinct heritages, languages, cultural practices and spiritual beliefs.

* Today, many people prefer the term First Nations instead of Indian or Native.

Who are the Four Host First Nations?

The Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games will be held in the traditional and shared territories of the Lil’wat, Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations – the Four Host First Nations of the 2010 Winter Games.

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