NAIG 2017 Profiles: Leslee Bear
- EFN Staff | March 30, 2017
Leslee Bear will be making her community Ochapowace First Nation proud when she attends this year’s North American Indigenous Games (NAIG) to compete in U19 Women’s Volleyball.
The 18-year-old volleyball player has been playing the sports for about five years. She is currently in Grade 12 attending Chief Kahkewistahaw Community School. Bear is looking forward to another NAIG experience.
“I played in NAIG 2014 in Regina, it was one of my most memorable experiences because I met a lot of great people I've maintained friendships with up until now,” she says. “I am looking forward to going to a new place and playing the sport I love, I'm also excited for the opportunity to meet lots of new people as I am a social butterfly.”
When asked who she looks up to, Bear says her father Les George is a huge role model in her life and she describes him as one the best First Nations fastball pitchers in Saskatchewan.
“I look up to him because of his determination. He trains all winter long to maintain his fitness while also being a councilor on my reserve which isn't easy,” she adds.
Bear first started playing volleyball in the city of Regina playing with Queen City Volleyball Club. As she went to practices she began to feel like the odd one in the team. Not knowing why, Bear continued to push through to finish off the season.
“After that I'd promised myself that I wouldn't let anyone make me feel like that anymore, and I kept that promise, from that point on I took on a role of leadership within each team I played and in the end, it shaped me into a more sportsmanlike athlete,” she says.
Her advice to youth who want to pursue their passion in sports is if you really want something; go get it despite any challenges.
“It will take some work, sweat, and maybe some tears, but I assure you, it will be worth it. Self-gratitude is the best feeling in the world, but it isn't something given to you, it's something that's earned,” she says.
The NAIG will be held in Toronto this summer during the week of July 16-23.