In honour of National Day for Truth and Reconciliation and Orange Shirt Day my boys and I headed downtown for a ceremony organized by the Town of Canmore and our Îyârhe Nakoda (Stoney) neighbours.
In case this is new to you, here’s a little information from the Town of Canmore’s website
“September 30 is National Day for Truth and Reconciliation and Orange Shirt Day. This is a day to recognize and commemorate the legacy of residential schools, which more than 150,000 First Nations, Métis, and Inuit children were forced to attend beginning in 1920 under the Indian Act. The first residential school was established in 1831, and the last residential school closed in 1996.
To learn more about the history of residential schools or to read the Memorial Register of children who went to residential schools and never returned home, visit the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation’s website here.”
I’m so glad the boys and I were able to take part in this ceremony, that together with our community, we had a chance to honour residential school survivors and the children who never made it home.
Following the opening prayers and speakers the crowd was invited up to smudge and Maverick asked if we could go. Smudging is a tradition I had never been a part of and I’m so grateful for the opportunity. Maverick’s interest filled my heart because our family has been talking about what’s been happening in Canada with residential schools using a couple of age appropriate resources like the book I Am Not A Number and the Spirit Bear’s Guide to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada Calls to Action.
Following the speeches came the dances and Kane captured a video and asked me if I would share it.
As you can see in the video, Maverick was enthusiastically taking pictures and showing his friends from school. This is new. Mav isn’t often interested in my camera, but that day I had to ask for it back to get a couple of my own images! And obviously I was grinning from ear to ear. Below are Mav’s favourite images of each of the dancers.
Thank you to everyone involved.
Your voices, prayers, songs and stories are so needed and appreciated.
When we got home we re-visited the book I Am Not A Number by Jenny Kay Dupuis and Kathy Kacer and worked on our Every Child Matters rocks for Sam Welsh’s Building Neighbourhoods Builds Community Project. All of this was recorded Mayfield Elementary’s read-in week, as always enjoy the chaos of a Real Life Read Aloud with the Wolfe boys!