The Duke and Duchess of Sussex travelled to the Hague for the delayed Invictus Games in April. The Duke of Sussex, 37, founded the Games back in 2014 as a competition showcasing the abilities of injured and wounded servicemen and women. Prince Harry announced last month that Canada would be the host nation for the next Games, which now include adaptive winter sports.
The 2023 Games will take place in Dusseldorf, Germany, in September next year. In April, Prince Harry said he was “extremely excited” to declare Canada the destination for the first hybrid winter games. He added: “With deep respect, I’m also pleased to share that the Games in Canada will be held in partnership with the First Nations, in the spirit of truth and reconciliation with indigenous communities.”
Ahead of the preparations taking shape, the Canadian government and the regional government of British Columbia are both donating $15 million (CAD) to support the 2025 Invictus Games. The competition will be held in Vancouver and Whistler. Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, said the 2025 Games will have a “uniquely Canadian” feel combined with the “profound impact” the Games had on ex-service members.
He told a crowd in Vancouver: “For the first time ever, and classically Canadian, these games will include winter sports.” He added: “We all know that when it comes to winter sports our Canadian competitors will show them how it’s done.” He continued: “You can have every bit of that drive and that push and that quest to give all you are to your teammates, to your service, to your country.” He said: “That’s what Invictus allows. Not just competitors but the comrades, the families and all of us to live, to experience, to celebrate.”
The British Columbia Premier, John Horgan, said the region was “proud” to host the most “inclusive” event yet. He commented: “We are proud to be bringing the 2025 Invictus Games to British Columbia. “Alongside local host nations, we look forward to welcoming athletes to Vancouver and Whistler for the most accessible, innovative and inclusive Invictus Games yet.” Canada has special significance for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, who first debuted their relationship at the Toronto Invictus Games in 2017.
The couple, along with their eldest child, Archie, briefly moved to Canada before permanently setting up in California, where they now reside. This comes just days after Prince Harry announced two new nations will be competing in future Games. On May 18, the Invictus Games Foundation revealed that Nigeria and Colombia will join the roster in a “new community structure”.
Prince Harry said: “The world felt the power of our Invictus community last month in The Hague, and now, I am delighted to announce that we have two new nations — Colombia and Nigeria — joining our inspiring international family.” He added: “As we continue to harness the power of sport in recovery and rehabilitation year-round, I’m proud to share that Invictus is now represented across every continent (except Antarctica)!”
“The Invictus Community of Nations is built by the resilience of the men and women who serve or have served, and it’s a distinct honour to offer even more wounded, injured and sick service personnel and veterans the opportunity to be included in the community and programming we offer.”