National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

Sep 30, 2021
National Day for Truth and Reconciliation
National Day for Truth and Reconciliation
September 30

Today marks the first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. Also Orange Shirt Day, September 30 was federally designated a statutory holiday in June 2021 as per the Truth and Reconciliation Calls to Action #80. From the Government of Canada: "The day honours the lost children and Survivors of residential schools, their families, and communities. Public commemoration of the tragic and painful history and ongoing impacts of residential schools is a vital component of the reconciliation process."

Read more from the Government of Canada HERE
Read the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's Calls to Action in full HERE
Calls 67-70 specifically refer to the work of museums and archives.

A national Indian Residential School Crisis Line has been set up to provide support for former students and those affected. People can access emotional and crisis referral services by calling the 24-hour national crisis line: 1-866-925-4419.
Indigenous Voices
Indigenous leaders, Elders, and Survivors have spoken about the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, what it means, and their hopes for this day. We invite our members to read and listen to their words. 
Ontario Virtual Events
Numerous museums and heritage organizations across Ontario and beyond are honouring the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation by hosting virtual events. Please see below to participate in some of these important conversations. 
Woodland Cultural Centre Programming
Woodland Cultural Centre has a number of virtual events taking place on the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation on September 30. 

September 30 at 9:30am ET: Thanksgiving Address
September 30 at 11:30am ET: Mohawk Institute Virtual Tour & Live Q&A
September 30 at 2:00pm ET: Truth and Reconciliation
Read more and register HERE.  
Anishinaabe Oral Tradition with
Rene Andre Meshake

Guelph Museums

Free Online Event
Thursday, September 30, 2021
2:00pm - 3:00pm ET

To honour the first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, join Guelph Museums for Anishinaabe Oral Tradition with Rene Andre Meshake. Rene will present a combination of written and oral storytelling as well as accompanying music.

Rene Andre Meshake is an Anishinaabe elder, visual and performing artist, award-winning author, storyteller, flute player, new media artist and a Recipient of Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee Medal. He works to fuse Ojibwe and English words into his stories, poetry and spoken word performances. Rene communicates his Ojibwe spiritual heritage to the contemporary world. 

In-person attendance is now sold out, but join them on Facebook Live @guelphmuseums for a virtual screening of this event! 

Read more HERE.

Dismantling Anti-Indigenous Racism
Heritage Toronto

Free Online Event
Thursday, September 30, 2021
12:00pm - 1:00pm ET

In recognition of the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, join Heritage Toronto for a timely discussion on the impact of systemic racism, including colonialism and the legacy of residential schools, on First Nations communities in Canada. Learn how past and present social injustices contribute to the endurance of anti-Indigenous racism. As part of the discussion, we will explore how to dismantle systemic discrimination today, tomorrow, and for the future.

Led by Jeremie Caribou, a mature student in the Public Administration and Governance Program at First Nations Technical Institute in partnership with Ryerson University. He is half Cree (nehithew) and Mohawk originally from Pukatawagan situated on the Missinnipi (now Churchill River) in northern Manitoba. Jeremie currently works as an Indigenous Initiatives Liaison Lead and the co-founder of OutdoorReconciliACTION a social enterprise intended to reconnect peoples relationship with the land through outdoor activities.

Read more and register HERE

Virtual Talk with Karen Chaboyer,
Residential School Survivor

Ken Seiling Waterloo Region Museum

Free Online Event
Thursday, September 30, 2021
7:00pm ET

As a part of Truth and Reconciliation Day, join the Ken Seiling Waterloo Region Museum to listen to Karen Chaboyer share her story and her experiences.

Karen Chaboyer is an Ojibwa mother and grandmother from Rainy River First Nations, a community in northwestern Ontario. She is most proudly admired by her children, who have witnessed her transformation, as she worked through layers of shame and learned to embrace her identity.

Read more and register HERE

Lesson from Wampum Diplomacy:
From the Two Row Wampum Until Today

Niagara Falls History Museum

Free Online Event
Thursday, September 30, 2021
3:00pm ET

In recognition of National Day or Truth and Reconciliation, the Niagara Falls History Museum is honoured to partner with Richard Hill, a Tuscarora Citizen of the Haudenosaunee, for an engaging conversation surrounding Indigenous history. Join us for Lesson from Wampum Diplomacy: From the Two Row Wampum Until Today, to explore our collective past. The talk will be followed by a Q&A session.

Register HERE

OMA Resources
OMA Resources for Indigenous Culture
and Reconciliation

The OMA encourages our members to listen to and amplify Indigenous voices and communities, and to use this day as an opportunity for education. While everyday is a chance to listen and learn, today is dedicated to engaging in commemorative events, making space for meaningful conversation, and reflecting upon how we may support reconciliation efforts individually, as organizations, and as a sector. 

Over the years, Indigenous museum professionals and organizations have generously shared their work with Ontario's museum sector. We encourage museums to learn from the teachings and examples of Indigenous Elders, colleagues, and organizations.

In March 2021, 250 Indigenous and non-Indigenous museum professionals gathered online for the second Indigenous Collections Symposium: Mashkawatgong-mamawewiziwin – strengthening our bonds, sharing our practices.  The recordings of the Symposium are now available to all HERE.

Please find more resources for Indigenous Culture and Reconciliation HERE.

Actions you can take in your work:

-Read the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action. Calls 67-70 specifically refer to the work of museums and archives

-Participants of the Indigenous Collections Symposium 2021 shared how they would apply what they learned at the Symposium:
  • Making the time to listen, learn, understand
  • Thinking about large decolonization and reconciliation frameworks; and taking small steps everyday
  • Sharing information with colleagues, providing training when possible
  • Recognizing the importance of language, traditional practices and policies; reflecting on how these are being accounted for in my institutional context
  • Advocating for funding and striving to obtain the resources necessary to do the work
  • Start communicating with Indigenous communities
  • When asking for help, being considerate towards the time and priorities of Indigenous colleagues and community members

-Consider a donation to an Indigenous museum, cultural centre, community, or support organization

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