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Treaty 6 Grand Wilton Littlechild, who was also a commissioner with the national Commission, has worked for four decades to host the World Nations Games in his home territory. (James Mackenzie/Canadian Press) It’s a dream that’s been 40 years in the making — the vision of Treaty 6 Grand Chief Wilton Littlechild to bring together Indigenous athletes from around the world.

Now, the World Indigenous Nations Games (WIN Games) have come alive, with athletes from 14 different countries descending upon Littlechild’s home community of Ermineskin Cree Nation, the Ecoch Cree Nation and Alexis Nakota Sioux .

"It’s been a very emotional time for me," said Littlechild. "Over the years we’ve tried many, many, many times to host the games…. We were met with a lot of resistance."

Littlechild recalled making the first resolution back in the summer of 1977 to the United Nations in Sweden, proposing to create an Indigenous world games based on the Olympic model. He wanted to make sure the cultural component of Indigenous traditions was included. But the idea took decades to come to fruition.

In 1967, Littlechild graduated with a bachelor of physical education degree and went on to earn a master’s degree in physical education from the University of Alberta.

Being an exceptional athlete himself, Littlechild won more than 50 provincial, regional, national and international championships. He has been inducted into seven sports halls of fame.

Playing hockey and competing in swimming as a young man were activities that Littlechild said helped keep him on track.

In 1976, he made history by becoming the first treaty from Alberta to obtain a law degree from the University of Alberta. He is a respected lawyer that has carried his trade into advocacy work at the United Nations. Members of the Oceania Global Region delegation pose […]

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