Women's soccer players kicking off national championship at Cape Breton University

News release

Nova Scotia gaining additional exposure as a sports tourism destination

November 17, 2021 · Sydney, Nova Scotia · Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA)

Atlantic Canada’s tourism industry is vital to the region and hosting national sporting events can generate significant economic benefits by attracting visitors outside the traditional tourism season. That is why the Government of Canada is investing to help Cape Breton University in Sydney to host the U Sports Women’s Soccer Nationals from November 18-21, 2021.

Federal government supports diversifying tourism markets  

Today, Mike Kelloway, Member of Parliament for Cape Breton-Canso, announced a non-repayable contribution of $40,000 to Cape Breton University. The announcement was made on behalf of the Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Minister of Official Languages and Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA).

This contribution will assist the host venue with marketing, promotion and photography, facility rentals and rental fees, bussing services, and officials’ fees, accommodations and transportation. It will also allow Cape Breton University to build on its growing reputation for hosting major amateur sporting events. The event will have the added benefit of increasing visitation and spending in Cape Breton in the fall shoulder season, providing a welcome boost to the region’s economy.

Today’s announcement further demonstrates the Government of Canada’s commitment to drive economic growth in the region by capitalizing on emerging opportunities to deliver world-class tourism experiences.


“As the impacts of the pandemic ease, it is vital that businesses and communities have the resources they need to thrive. The tourism sector in Atlantic Canada contributes significantly to the region’s economic prosperity. Investing in projects that will help communities attract visitors, create jobs and lead to continued economic growth is essential. Together, we’ll build back stronger.”
Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Minister of Official Languages and Minister responsible for ACOA

“Hosting the U Sports Women’s Soccer Nationals will help expand the region’s growing sports tourism market by promoting Cape Breton as a high caliber event destination. Our support will help Cape Breton University to showcase our hospitality on the national stage, not to mention some entertaining matches featuring lots of very talented players from across Canada.”
-  Mike Kelloway, Member of Parliament for Cape Breton-Canso 

“We are thrilled to welcome the country to Cape Breton University as we host the 2021 Protocase U Sports Women’s Soccer Championship, presented by Bell Aliant, and grateful for the support from ACOA to help create an experience the student-athletes won't forget. This is an opportunity for us to showcase our nationally ranked soccer program, as well as our CAPERS hospitality. We are ready for a great week on the pitch, and look forward to hosting other national championships in women’s basketball and men’s soccer in 2023.”
- David Dingwall, President and Vice-Chancellor of Cape Breton University

Quick facts

  • Cape Breton University is one of the fastest growing universities in Canada with 487 full-time jobs and an enrolment of more than 5,500 students. 

  • The U Sports Women’s Soccer Nationals will bring 8 teams from across Canada.

  • U Sports is the national sport governing body of university sport in Canada, comprising the majority of degree-granting universities in the country. 

  • The event will attract 300 participants, including players, coaches and support staff to Cape Breton from November 18-21, 2021.  

  • Funding for this project is provided through ACOA’s Innovative Communities Fund (ICF).


Catherine Mounier-Desrochers
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Official Languages and of the
Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Chris Brooks
Communications Director, Nova Scotia
Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Lenore Parsley
Director of Strategic Communications
Cape Breton University

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