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Native Made Pop-up & Orange Shirt Day
September 24 @ 11:00 am - 5:00 pm
Come to our pop-up event on September 24th at Alder Commons to support Native artists and learn more about Orange Shirt Day which takes place on September 30th. There will be live music, refreshments and food in the surrounding Cully neighborhood!
Each year on September 30th, First Nations, Metis, Inuit and Native American communities honor the children who fell victim to the residential, boarding school, mission school, and day school systems in both Canada and United States.
Established in 2013, by First Nations community in Williams Lake, British Columbia elder Phyllis Webstad shared her story of how her grandmother bought her an orange shirt to wear to her first day at residential school.
Like her grandmother and mother before her, Phyllis was sent to a residential school. Immediately upon arriving, she and the other kids were stripped and forced into different clothing. She never again saw the orange shirt. Webstad later stated, “I didn’t understand why they wouldn’t give it back to me, it was mine! The color orange has always reminded me of that and how my feelings didn’t matter, how no one cared and how I felt like I was worth nothing. All of us little children were crying, and no one cared.”
Nearly a decade later, Orange Shirt Day is a symbol of our losses as Native peoples, but also our resilience, a day to remember those who didn’t survive and those who are still with us today.
Since May 27th, 2021’s announcement from the Kamloops Residential school, thousands of graves sites have been identified – but the total number of children lost remains unknown.