I Am Coming to Canada: The Invictus Games’ First-Ever Winter Hybrid Games in Vancouver

Britain’s Prince Harry shakes hands with a British team member after the wheelchair basketball final of the Invictus Games in The Hague, Netherlands © REUTERS/Piroschka Van De Wouw

By Allie Murray

The Invictus Games are returning to Canada—this time, British Columbia will become the host nation for the first-ever winter hybrid Invictus Games.

The event and namesake foundation was founded in 2014 by Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, and brings together wounded, injured, and sick servicemen and women for a multi-national sporting event. The event was hosted in Toronto in 2017 and has unified nations in a variety of host cities, including Orlando, London, Sydney, and more.

Earlier this year, Prince Harry announced Vancouver and Whistler would be the host cities for the 2025 games, welcoming more than 500 competitors from 20 different countries.

“I’m excited that Canada will host the 2025 Invictus Games,” Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said. “Today’s investment will help us welcome competitors from around the world to beautiful British Columbia to showcase their athleticism, drive, and competitive spirit. Canadians look forward to welcoming you once again.”

Similarly, Lawrence MacAulay, the Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence shared his excitement, “It is incredibly exciting for Canada to be hosting the 2025 Invictus Games in Vancouver and Whistler. The energy I felt in Vancouver when the Games were announced this spring is only going to build as we get closer to 2025. Canadians and folks right across the world are in for a great show when these world-class athletes compete and showcase their talents at the first ever winter hybrid games.”

invictus games
Photo © PA Wire/PA Images/Reuters

The games returning to Canada was made possible with support from the Governments of Canada and British Columbia, alongside bids from True Patriot Love Foundation and the Soldier On program.

“Invictus Games 2025 will provide a platform to once again demonstrate how perseverance, determination, and unity can inspire, empower, and enable recovery and well-being,” Jay Feyko, National Manager at Soldier On, explained. “It also is an opportunity to reaffirm to ill and injured members of the Canadian Armed Forces, Veterans and those military communities around the world, that they are not alone, and need not to recover alone.”

The 2025 event will also be the first time the Invictus Games will include adaptive winter sports like alpine skiing, Nordic skiing, skeleton, and curling.

Similarly, the event is dedicated to respecting territorial protocols and working with local Indigenous communities in the planning, execution and participation of the games.

“The Invictus Games Vancouver-Whistler 2025 will offer a global platform to expand the range and profile of winter adaptive sports. 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,” Prince Harry said.

The Duke of Sussex presents a medal to a Team USA player, winners of the final of the Wheelchair Rugby against Team UK during the Invictus Games at the Zuiderpark, in The Hague, Netherlands © Aaron Chown/PA Images via Reuters

After attending the Warrior Games in 2013—an event similar to the Invictus Games for injured active duty and veteran U.S. military service members—Prince Harry saw firsthand how the power of sport could uplift those suffering from injuries and illness. He was inspired by this visit, and the Invictus Games were born.

The name Invictus means unconquered—it embodies the fighting spirit of wounded, injured and sick service personnel and personifies what these tenacious men and women can achieve post-injury.

“This is the spirit of Invictus,” a competitor on the Romanian team shared. “Never quit. Even if you are down—get up and continue your race.”

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