Pan Am Potential: Hamilton Longevity
The first thought that came to mind as I read “[Tim Hortons] Coffee chain buys naming rights to stadium on former Ivor Wynne sites” was something along the lines of, “Rockin’ new stadium for Ti-cat’s; sweet!” Since Tim Hortons began his successful brewing business in Hamilton, I saw this as quite fitting. Then I read “Hamilton’s two-year countdown to Pan Am games begins”. Quickly skimming through the article I learned that this stadium would host the @panam2015 games, hold Tim Hortons Field and the Ti-Cats CFL team.
These updates were all pretty awesome, but it wasn’t complete until I stumbled upon my final @CBCHamilton article titled “Hamilton’s diverse communities excited about Pan Am opportunities”. My eyes were opened to the multitude of potential that the stadium and this global sporting extravaganza has to offer the city of Hamilton!
The Pan Am means that integral centres, such as the Immigrant Women’s Centre (@iwchamilton) and the Centre for Civic Inclusion (@InformHamilton) have the potential to make big impacts in the community. These centres have the ability to educate, raising awareness and emphasize importance of integration and diversity in Hamilton, through embedding it into the foundation of the games that are played. As the executive-director of the Centre for Civic Inclusion Centre, Evelyn Myrie said, “[The Pan Am Games] does have the capacity to really drive diversity and inclusion”. This would include national cultural events, job and volunteer programs that connect internationally skilled employees with relevant employers, educational and support programs for disadvantaged youth and labour recruitment for the diversity that calls Hamilton home.
The Pan Am itself further poses potential for engagement and coordination by the Hispanic community. As the major event being held in Hamilton, Rocio Reyes, president of Fraternity Hispanic Association, suggests that “Soccer is part of our fabric”, and that the excitement is extending to the youth in this ethnic community. In general, the potential for increased immigrant involvement through volunteering and labour, as well as the cultural awareness that this will bring to the city, is extremely exciting.
Withe the potential to shift immigrant involvement for years to come, will we harness the potential for all its worth?