Without the 2010 Olympics, the First Nations Snowboard Team may never have existed
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When Vancouver/Whistler was chosen to be an Olympic Host City in 2003, the buzz of it hit and it hit hard. Being a snowboarder for only 2 years, there was not a single thought in my head to even consider training for the Olympics. That would be kind of ludicrous! Yet not even a year later, I received a phone call from Aaron Marchant, who became the founder and coordinator of the First Nations Snowboard Team (FNST), then just a dude with a dream. This phone call was very weird, I was asked if I wanted to train as a snowboarder to compete at the Olympics and represent my nation; not only Canada, but one that dates back much further, the Lil’wat Nation…. ummm WHAT!? I accepted as any 18 year old would, and there began the Olympic dream for me, and an amazing opportunity for future First Nations youth to prosper and excel in the snowboard world.
Alongside my close friend and FNST member Jonathan Redman, we trained hard and were focused on only one thing, the halfpipe. We made it onto the BC snowboard team together, we travelled to halfpipe contests together and we trained the younger generation that was part of the newly formed FNST Recreational Program together. The Olympics and snowboarding were all anybody talked about around me, and it was exciting being a young Indigenous snowboarder with Olympic dreams in her home territory. As my career progressed, so did the FNST.