The Town of St. Marys is encouraging ongoing education about Indigenous history and culture as it commemorates National Day for Truth and Reconciliation on September 30. The municipality has several activities and learning opportunities planned, both before and beyond the day itself.
From September 28 to September 30, the St. Marys Museum will be hosting interactive research sessions about residential schools. Led by a PhD candidate from the University of Montreal, the sessions are designed to help museums encourage reflection and allyship when teaching difficult history to non-Indigenous Canadians. Pre-registration is required (emailÂ email@example.comÂ or call 519-284-3556).
The museum is also hosting two exhibits that explore Indigenous themes and topics. The #hopeandhealingcanada project, created by MĂ©tis artist Tracey-Mae Chambers features red yarns that illustrate connections between Indigenous, Inuit and MĂ©tis people with Canadians, while also addressing the decolonization of public spaces. As of September 28, it will be joined byÂ Talking about Treaty 29, an exhibit about the history of treaties in the area now known as St. Marys.Â
Commemorations will start at 9:00 a.m. on September 30, with the raising of a special orange flag at Town Hall. The flag, which includes the words â€śEvery Child Mattersâ€ť was designed byÂ Jeffrey â€śRedâ€ť George, an Ojibway artist who grew up on the lands of the First Nation of Kettle and Stoney Point.
At 10:00 a.m., local Indigenous educator Patsy Anne Day will lead a corn husk doll-making workshop in the Town Hall auditorium. The library is also promoting a curated list of books written by Indigenous authors and its Book Walk currently features a story about the seven grandfather teachings. Â
At 1:00 p.m., the library will host a live stream ofÂ Remembering the Children, a national commemorative gathering happening at Ottawaâ€™s LeBreton Flats.
All the events and activities surrounding the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation are free and open to everyone. Those attending events on September 30 are encouraged to wear orange shirts to raise awareness about the ongoing impacts of residential schools and to reinforce the idea that â€śEvery Child Matters.â€ť
Additional information about the Townâ€™s plans for National Day for Truth and Reconciliation is available atÂ www.townofstmarys.com/reconciliation.