First National Day of Truth and Reconciliation
September 30th marks the first National Day of Truth and Reconciliation across Canada. The motion to set the day aside, on a national level, was supported unanimously in The House of Commons earlier this year in June. Each province has made varying decisions on how to take time to reflect on the effects Residential Schools have had on Indigenous People for many generations.
The national day set aside is timely with the recent uncovering of unmarked burial sites at several former Residential School sites across Canada. Head of Archives for the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, Raymond Frogner, states that the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation is a good opportunity for reflective discussions and learning.
Many communities across the region are finding their own ways to spend the day set aside. Residents of Kenora were invited to walks from the former Cecilia Jeffrey Residential School on Airport Road to the Lake of the Woods Ceremony, before a gathering and Pow Wow under the White Cap Pavilion between 1 p.m. and 10 p.m.
The Lake of the Woods District Museum will also host a “We Were Taught Differently” display about the history of the Cecilia Jeffrey and Mt. Mary’s residential schools between 2:30 p.m. and 8:00 p.m., admission is by donation.