The City of Victoria is considering a $20,000 investment to bid to host the 2022 Invictus Games.
The Invictus Games could come to Greater Victoria if a joint effort between Victoria, Esquimalt, Langford, Oak Bay and Saanich took place.
So far, Oak Bay has voted to pay its part ($5,000), while Sannich is also considering the $20,000 investment. Langford would also be accountable for $20,000, while Esquimalt would need to cover $5,000. According to Keith Wells, executive director from the Greater Victoria Sports Tourism Association, the smaller municipalities have smaller roles, and therefor have smaller funding requests.
If Greater Victoria wins the bid to host, Victoria would likely pay over $200,000 overall in costs.
In a report put forward to Victoria City Council, Director of Parks, Recreation and Facilities Thomas Soulliere argued that hosting the Invictus Games could have a significant economic impact, citing the 2017 Invictus Games in Toronto which had an overall impact of approximately $42 million. Soulliere projected the total amount of investment needed from all government levels would be around $39 million.
The Invictus Games were launched by Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, in 2014 as a multi-sport event for wounded, injured or sick armed services personnel and veterans.
Soulliere further argued that hosting the Games would allow for a better understanding of the services and sacrifices military personnel put forward, as well as encourage dialogue about mental health.
The Invictus Games run for 10 days, and would see 500 competitors, 300 coaches and staff, as well as 1,000 family members and friends of competitors come to the region.
The City of Victoria will vote on the initial $20,000 investment on Thursday.
–With files from Wolfgang Depner
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