Football Canada and Indigenous artist Kolten Khasalus Grant have collaborated to produce a national identity for football in Indigenous communities across the country.
The Indigenous Football Canada logo will be available on merchandise for Football Weekend in Canada on Oct. 15. Net proceeds will be directed toward the development and support of Indigenous football.
“Football Canada’s commitment to diversity is always evolving,” Football Canada president Jim Mullin said in a statement. “This stunning example of visual expression and storytelling is something that all Indigenous communities can connect with and make their own.”
The creation of the logo was inspired by Grant’s aunt, Corrine Hunt. She recently redesigned a version of the B.C. Lions logo, which was distributed on 10,000 T-shirts for awareness of Truth and Reconciliation Day at a recent game.
Grant reached out to Mullin, who is his uncle, to discuss the Lions’ effort and the process for the Football Canada Indigenous logo was born. But Grant said the work, which he titled, “Our Home on Sacred Land,” is much more than just an image.
“After I placed my ideas on the page, I started to see what it truly meant to me,” he said. “There are two salmon motifs and a child’s face in the Maple Leaf to represent the importance of our children — the next generation — and the prosperity they bring to the sport.
“The child’s face represents everyone who plays before achieving the knowledge and ability to become a true athlete. The beginning is equally important as the finish line for a genuinely passionate individual. I believe what makes the sport so magnificent is what each individual brings to the table as well as a team in its entirety.
“Finally, I chose to put a human figure in the centre of the Maple Leaf. With great thought, I chose this to represent our coaches. They give their time and energy into these teams for them to succeed. They are the ones who can help these athletes become great with the right training and guidance. It is magnificent to see people grow and excel when they have the proper tools, discovering a true passion for the sport.”
Mullin said Football Canada — the country’s national governing body for football — and sport in general both have a role to play in reconciliation.
“We take the points 87 through 91 of the Truth and Reconciliation calls to action regarding sport to heart,” he said. “Our commitment is to do everything within our reach at Football Canada to empower Indigenous athletes and their coaches, mentors, and communities to engage in the sport.”
Merchandise bearing the new logo will go on sale at the Football Canada online store (www.footballcanadashop.ca) during Football Weekend in Canada from Oct. 15-17.
The Canadian Press