It appears that the Vancouver 2010 public relations department has some work to do if it wants to attract Canadians to the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games. A Decima Research poll the federal government commissioned which CTV News obtained shows that 34 per cent of Canadians don’t know where the 2010 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games will be held.
Vancouver Mayor Sam Sullivan was in Toronto promoting the Games and said despite the poll he’s confident the Games will be a boost for Canada and that they will bring “us together as a country”.
According to the poll the farther from the province of British Columbia people live, the more likely it is they aren’t aware of the Games. British Columbia is the most western of Canada’s provinces, bordering on the Pacific Ocean.
CTV reports that in British Columbia 97 per cent of respondents correctly identified Vancouver or Whistler as the location for the Games; in Alberta, the province adjacent to British Columbia, it was 68 per cent; and farther east in Ontario it was 60 per cent with 43 per cent in Quebec.
The poll also shows that while most Canadians believe the Olympics will benefit tourism and Canada’s image abroad, only 40 per cent think they will have a positive impact on individuals facing social challenges. In British Columbia only 29 per cent agree with that statement.
The federal government released a statement to CTV news saying it is “encouraged” by the survey and says it will “work collaboratively with its partners to create awareness of and excitement for Canada’s Games”.
CTV reports the Vancouver 2010 Organizing Committee has done its own survey that suggests national awareness has increased since last summer.
VANOC’s Dave Cobb said, “it’s important for us when we’re either raising money through sponsorship that companies throughout the country believe that the Games are relevant in their communities. Also, ticket buyers and volunteers for the Games – a lot of that will come from people outside of our province”.
Meanwhile Canada is contemplating hosting another sports event. The “Golden Horseshoe” of Ontario is considering bidding for the 2015 Pan-American Games.