February 7, 2023 – Vancouver, BC
League1 BC announces rebranding of Varsity FC to Nautsa’mawt FC ahead of 2023 season.
On January 18th, League1 BC announced the transfer of Ownership of “Varsity FC” with Hope and Health For Life Society becoming the new owners of the League1 BC club’s license.
In the spirit of reconciliation, the league is proud to acknowledge the transformation of the club’s brand identity and name to become Nautsa’mawt FC. Inspired by the Hulq’u’mi’num term, Nautsa’mawt, meaning “One Heart, One Mind”, the name embodies a collective journey forward to create and nurture a pathway through sport for Indigenous athletes, coaches, and staff to achieve their greatest potential and dreams.
The transformation of the brand, led by Coast Salish artist, Maynard Johnny Jr., utilizes the ‘copper shield’ shape, recognizing the Indigenous opportunity within the organization. The top half of the logo is an Indigenous-designed raven which represents transformation for all players as they progress on their pathways from grassroots to semi-pro and beyond. The bottom half of the logo is the raven’s feathers (left) and talon (right). The blue and yellow colours of the brand remain as the primary colours of the club, in addition to the club font remaining the same.
The star in the raven’s mouth honours the League1 Canada vision to “Rise As One” and for players to reach for the stars on their journey as ‘champions for life’ while also honouring the inaugural Regular Season Championships won by the Varsity FC Men’s and Women’s teams in 2022.
“It is important for League1 BC to be a platform for opportunities within the game for all individuals, and we are eager to provide a meaningful pathway for players, coaches, staff, and referees to progress in the game. With “One heart, one mind”, we will work with the Nautsa’mawt FC ownership group to learn and grow in this critical area of development and reconciliation efforts across the league.,” said Sian Bagshawe, League1 BC General Manager. “The brand transformation is an important step in the reconciliation process to align with the vision for the club.”
“Nautsa’mawt FC is an exciting opportunity to make real world change, to implement the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s call to action to increase Indigenous representation in the Canadian sport system,” said Bill Yoachim, Snuneymuxw Nation Council Member, co-owner of Nautsa’mawt FC. “We hold our hands up to UBC Athletics’ high calibre coaches and student athletes for their contributions to our communities through Hope and Health and look forward to elevating further with them as a valuable core of Nautsa’mawt FC. With this in place we are set up for winning on and off the pitch.”
The club will partner with former Varsity FC license holders, UBC Athletics, as they will provide support for infrastructure and personnel in 2023 with Nautsa’mawt FC training on the UBC campus and playing their home matches at Thunderbird Stadium, situated on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the xwməθkwəyə̓m (Musqueam) people.
New social media channels and a new website will begin for Nautsa’mawt FC effective immediately.
Twitter: @nautsamawtfc Instagram: @nautsamawtfc
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ABOUT LEAGUE1 BC: League1 BC is an adult open age Pro-Am Soccer League operated by BC Soccer. Established in 2021, the league is intended to bridge the gap between youth and professional soccer, targeting the “Training to Compete” stage within Long-term Player Development (LTPD). The League will engage communities across British Columbia providing standard-based competition and training environments for female and male players, coaches, and match officials. League1 BC serves as a key platform of development into further opportunities within the game.
ABOUT BC SOCCER: Established in 1904, BC Soccer is the largest provincial sports organization (PSO) in BC and the third largest soccer specific PSO in Canada with over 150,000 participants, consisting of registered players, coaches, referees, administrators, and soccer leaders. As a professional not-for-profit society and a member of Canada Soccer, BC Soccer is committed to providing the widest opportunities for existing and potential participants, as well as provide support in the most effective and appropriate way for current players, parents, volunteers, member clubs, leagues, and districts.