Saturday, Sept. 30, marks the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation in Canada. This important day honours and remembers the children who never returned home and Survivors of residential schools, their families and communities.
Orange Shirt Day, a grassroots, Indigenous-led commemorative day, is also recognized nationally on Sept. 30 to raise awareness for the intergenerational trauma and impacts of Residential schools across Canada. The reflection, remembrance and learning about Indigenous Peoples and communities that occurs on Sept. 30 must continue year-long.
In Calgary, the community’s commitment to support meaningful action towards Indigenous Reconciliation and the removal of systemic barriers is a priority in the economic strategy, Calgary in the New Economy.
Together, our vision for economic Reconciliation is an equitable future for Indigenous Peoples, businesses and communities.
There are many community-led events and learning resources available for Calgarians to further learn, reflect and commemorate this important day.
Attend local community-led events
As Sept. 30 also marks Orange Shirt Day, Calgarians are encouraged to wear Orange Shirts and attend local events.
Additional events to continue our learning journey include:
- Participate in one of the many community events listed by the Calgary Foundation
- Sept. 27, 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.: Orange Shirt Awareness Pin Workshop at Sparrow Artspace
- Sept. 29, 4 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.: Community Star Blanket Workshop with Dale Swampy at Sparrow Artspace
- Sept. 30, 9 a.m.: City of Calgary’s Orange Shirt Day at Fort Calgary
- Sept. 30, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.: Pokaiks - The Children Commemorative Walk & Gathering 2023
- Ongoing: The Witness Blanket, a large-scale art installation at the Calgary Public Central Library
Visit Explore Downtown Calgary for more events commemorating National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.
Continue your learning journey
There are many resources Canadians can access to learn more about the harsh realities experienced by Indigenous Peoples across the country.
Guiding much of this work are the 94 calls to action published by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada in 2015. The report provides tangible recommendations for all orders of government to work together, and change policies and practices to repair the generations of harm and move forward.
In 2016, the Calgary Aboriginal Urban Affairs Committee released 43 recommendations in the White Goose Flying Report outlining how the 94 Truth and Reconciliation calls to action can be implemented by the City of Calgary.
Reflecting on these recommendations is a good place to start learning more about the experiences of Indigenous Peoples in Canada and the significance of Truth and Reconciliation on the path forward together.
Additional learning resources include:
- The Calgary Public Library reading resources and events
- University of Alberta Indigenous Canada certificate
- University of Calgary Territorial acknowledgement pronunciation guide
- Urban Society for Aboriginal Youth IndigiTRAILS app
- Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada - Truth and Reconciliation
- Watch a brief video about the Canadian Residential School History
- Follow social media accounts like @reconciliationcanada or @gcindigenous
Support Indigenous-led organizations and creators
Calgarians can also honour and commemorate the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation by supporting Indigenous-led organizations, businesses, artists and creators today and in the future. On Sept. 30, wear an orange shirt from a local Indigenous business or vendor.
Until Sept. 30, view the Honouring the Children exhibition at Sparrow Artspace, organized by the CIF Reconciliation Society. The exhibition features the work of 14 Indigenous artists honouring the lost children and Survivors of residential schools and the sixties scoop.
Visit the Indigenous Makers Market, curated by Four Winds YYC The Makers Market, to celebrate Indigenous art and culture and support Indigenous artists from Treaty 7 lands and beyond. This free, public event is held in the Jack Singer Concert Hall lobby from 12 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. on Sept. 30.
Learn more about the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation and access learning resources on the Canadian Heritage website. Dive deeper into the community’s economic strategy, Calgary in the New Economy, that identifies a path towards an economy that is inclusive and accessible for everyone.
Calgary Economic Development is committed to advancing Reconciliation with and for Indigenous Peoples, businesses and communities to contribute to an equitable future.
We strive to respond to and adopt the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action. We will collaborate with the City of Calgary, including the Indigenous Relations Office, to develop actionable items in response to the White Goose Flying Report. We are responsible to listen, learn from, and visit with Indigenous Peoples, Elders, Traditional Knowledge keepers and community members. This is in the spirit of fostering reciprocal and mutually beneficial relationships to become a trusted partner to Indigenous communities and businesses.
This commitment is only the start of a pathway that is intergenerational. We will identify, amplify and elevate the power of the Indigenous economies in Treaty 7 and Métis Nation Region 3. We commit to holding ourselves accountable through our Reconciliation Action Plan, to support actions and strategies that create tangible benefits for Indigenous Peoples towards economic prosperity.