International Sport Exchanges

Through sport exchanges with our sister provinces, Alberta has established strong relationships with Hokkaido, Japan and Gangwon, Korea.

International Sport Exchanges are a two-year commitment: one year of the exchange involves Alberta athletes, coaches and officials representing a specific sport visiting the sister province; the other year involves the sister province’s athletes, coaches and officials visiting Alberta.

At the end of the two years, the Alberta Sport Connection and the sister province negotiate a new agreement involving a different sport.

The International Sport Exchange is a partnership project between Alberta Culture & Tourism, Alberta Sport Connection, Provincial Sport Organizations and International Relations.

Current Exchanges

Gangwon, Korea – Cross Country Skiing
Hokkaido, Japan – Badminton

Exchange History

1974 Alberta signs the Protocol of Friendship with the Province of Gangwon and Republic of Korea.
1980 Prefecture of Hokkaido becomes Alberta’s second sister province with the signing of the Proclamation of Friendship and Affiliation.
1981 Heilongjiang, China becomes Alberta’s third sister province with the signing of the Protocol of Understanding and Friendship.
1990 Alberta signs Memorandum of Understanding with the Russian Republic.

Benefits

International Sport Exchanges bring many benefits to Alberta and our athletes, coaches and officials.
The exchange:

  • Fosters a deep commitment to the ideals of peace, fraternity and mutual respect
  • Contributes to international goodwill and understanding
  • Promotes Alberta and creates economic ties
  • Contributes to the overall development of young Albertans through exposure to diverse and vibrant cultures
  • Contributes to sport development through exposure to international competition and coaching
  • Improves the potential of Alberta athletes through exposure to competitions within foreign countries
  • Improves the quality of coaching and officiating through exposure to different training methods and ideas
  • Expands the knowledge base related to sport development systems and sport medicine
  • Encourages Alberta sport organizations to develop an international sport network

Athlete, Alberta - Hokkaido Rugby Sevens Exchange, 2012

"Being able to initiate a game between Alberta and Hokkaido was a thrilling experience, knowing you flew around the world to represent your home"

Athlete, Alberta - Gangwon Biathlon Exchange, 2015

"Exposure to Korean culture has opened my eyes and given me a new perspective on the world. I feel very, very lucky to have been part of a once in a lifetime opportunity"

Team Leaders, Alberta - Hokkaido Speed Skating Exchange, 2011

"... a tremendous success! Through mutual respect, dialogue, and friendly competition, the bonds of friendship between Alberta and Hokkaido were strengthened"

Contact Information

Gangwon, Korea

Pat Lechelt

Consultant, High Performance Sport
Alberta Sport Connection
Suite 500
10055  106 Street NW
Edmonton, Alberta T5J 1G3
P: 780-422-8309
Email: pat.lechelt@albertasport.ca

Hokkaido, Japan

Cam Berwald

Consultant, High Performance Sport
Alberta Sport Connection
Suite 500
10055  106 Street NW
Edmonton, Alberta T5J 1G3
P: 780-422-7109
Email: cam.berwald@albertasport.ca