Commonwealth Sport Canada will launch its latest pilot project in Hamilton 90 years on from its hosting of the first British Empire Games ©CSC

Commonwealth Sport Canada (CSC) is to mark the 90th anniversary of the nation hosting the first edition of the Commonwealth Games in Hamilton by returning to the city with a new pilot project linked to its SportWORKS youth programme.

CSC is bringing its "Sport for Newcomers Initiative" to Hamilton in partnership with the YMCA Hamilton Burlington Brantford (HBB).

It aims to reduce or eliminate barriers for newcomers in youth sport.

"A key component of feeling Canadian is by playing and watching sports together," Lily Lumsden, senior regional manager of YMCA HBB employment and immigrant services, said.

"This is especially true for newcomer youth.

"This partnership will give the newcomer youth of Hamilton an opportunity to not only improve their skills and knowledge of sport but increase their social networks.

"I'm excited to embark on such a positive initiative that will have tremendous impact on our youth."

Hamilton will host the latest SportWORKS programme, jointly delivered by Commonwealth Sport Canada ©Getty Images
Hamilton will host the latest SportWORKS programme, jointly delivered by Commonwealth Sport Canada ©Getty Images

The specific activities included in the Hamilton project will be needs-based and identified by the YMCA HBB along with the participating young people.

As well as creating more sporting opportunities for young people, there will be an emphasis on developing partnerships with local organisations.

"We are thrilled that the world leading development through sport model we have used successfully for a quarter-century is being applied in Canada and believe in the power of sport and its ability to transform lives," CSC President Richard Powers said.

"We look forward to working with the YMCA HBB on this latest pilot, and are confident that newcomer youth will benefit from the social and health impacts of participating in sport."

The Hamilton pilot project will be lead by a CSC SportWORKS officer who will volunteer full-time with the YMCA HBB for eight months to increase these opportunities for newcomers, particularly women.

Hamilton hosted what were then known as the British Empire Games in 1930.

The city is the clear frontrunner in the race to host the 2026 Commonwealth Games, but Hamilton officials including Mayor Fred Eisenberger are yet to commit to supporting a 2026 bid, after the group leading the campaign pivoted from 2030 to 2026.