Every Child Matters: show your support on September 30th by wearing orange
The City is urging Saskatoon residents to wear an orange shirt on Wednesday, September 30th to acknowledge the harm that was done to children in Indian Residential Schools and to honour the survivors, their families, and those in unmarked graves who did not make it home. Wearing orange is a way to acknowledge the legacy of residential schools and a commitment to the process of reconciliation.
“Wearing orange is a message to the world that you believe Every Child Matters,” says Melissa Cote, the City’s Director of Indigenous Initiatives. “Your orange shirt might spark interest from colleagues, family and friends – this presents the perfect opportunity to share your reasons for wearing orange. Everyone can help to raise public awareness in this way.”
“Thank you to all who use this day to educate themselves on how residential schools as a social engineering project changed the relationships with Indigenous Peoples in this country,” says Eugene Arcand, Chair of the Saskatoon Survivors Circle. “In this time of purification, we can all do better.”
The City has joined together with other organizations to offer the Orange Shirt Day ConnectR Reconciliation Challenge. The Reconciliation Challenge is a commitment to start or continue a journey of reconciliation by using the BeAConnectR.com website to learn more about Indigenous peoples' past and present experiences. You can choose to join the ConnectR Challenge Facebook Group if you want to share the experience and access guidance and support.
The City of Saskatoon co-chairs Reconciliation Saskatoon. Reconciliation Saskatoon is a community of over 115 organizations, non-profits, businesses and partners who have come together towards one mission: to initiate a citywide conversation about reconciliation and provide opportunities for everyone to engage in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action.
The Orange Shirt Day ConnectR Reconciliation Challenge was made possible through the support of Nutrien and the Saskatoon Community Foundation and a partnership between Reconciliation Saskatoon and the Saskatoon Survivors Circle—a group of Elders that are residential school survivors who ensure that residential schools and their legacy are never forgotten.