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June 8, 2007
For immediate release

Province Approves Funding to Send Island Athletes to International Island Games

Community and Cultural Affairs

The International Island Games Association of Prince Edward Island will be sending a delegation of 82 athletes and coaches to the International Island Games in Rhodes, Greece this summer, thanks to contributions from the provincial government.

Every two years, the Inter-Island Games bring together athletes from small islands from different parts of the world in friendly sports competitions. A fund-raising committee has been working to pay for the trip through athlete contributions and corporate and private sponsorship.

“The athletes have been working very hard to raise money so they could attend these games and have already paid their deposits,” said Community and Cultural Affairs Minister Elmer MacFadyen. “Through no fault of their own, some anticipated funding has not come through to date, and we felt government should step in to help ensure this opportunity, for our athletes and our province, is not lost.”

Minister MacFayden said the local Island Games Association is exploring opportunities to host the 2013 Island Games in Prince Edward Island. The immediate costs associated with sending a local delegation to the International Island Games in Rhodes is $299,995.

“It is necessary for our province to have a substantial presence at the 2007, 2009 and 2011 Games to ensure we are in a better position to bid for the Games in 2013,” he said.

The Games have never been held in North America. Projections indicate that the 2013 Games could attract up to 4,500 athletes and visitors over a 10-day period and generate up to $10 million in revenue for the province.

There are currently 25 Island members in the International Island Games Association, including Bermuda, Gibralter, the Isle of Man, and the Shetland Islands.

The Island of Rhodes is situated in the eastern Mediterranean basin and marks the easternmost point of the Greek archipelago.

Media Contact: Connie McNeill
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