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NDP Leader Tom Mulcair plays street hockey during a federal election campaign stop in Kamloops, B.C., on Wednesday, September 2, 2015

JONATHAN HAYWARD/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Thomas Mulcair has promised a $28-million investment in Sport Canada to support youth sports and encourage participation by poor and disadvantaged youth.

The windbreaker-clad NDP leader made the announcement Wednesday outside a sports centre, before joining a game of street hockey with a group of kids.

He says sports were an important part of his life growing up and it's essential that young people have the opportunity to play regardless of their backgrounds.

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The investment would increase available funding to provinces and territories for community sports programs through Sport Canada bilateral agreements.

Mulcair says it will also help under-represented groups such as low-income youth, girls and young women, new Canadians, indigenous, LGBT and disabled children.

He says the funding will help families with the cost of registration fees, equipment and transportation.

It was the NDP leader's final stop on a three-day tour of British Columbia's southern Interior, a largely Conservative region where he is trying to win new votes.

He told a raucous crowd of supporters in Kamloops on Tuesday night that he will invest in infrastructure and transit in order to create good, local jobs.

He's vowing to champion for manufacturing and innovation in B.C., where the NDP says over 30,000 manufacturing jobs have been lost under the Harper government.

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