National Day for Truth and Reconciliation 2022 in Prestige Communities

Sept 30th, 2022 is the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. It is a day to honour the many children who did not come home from residential schools, as well as survivors, and their communities. It is a time to learn, experience, and support our local First Nations people.

The National Day for Truth and Reconciliation is also known as Orange Shirt Day, which began as an Indigenous grassroots commemorative day, with the orange shirt being a symbol of the culture, freedom, and self esteem that colonialism has taken from Indigenous people. The orange shirt was chosen as this symbol because of Phyllis Webstand’s personal experiences with residential schools. You can learn about Phyllis Webstandand her orange shirt story here.

Here is a list of events, experiences, and learning opportunities happening in and around Prestige communities for Truth and Reconciliation Day.

The Thompson Okanagan Region:

Okanagan Heritage Museum – Kelowna – Learn about the history of the Syilx people, both pre and post contact, on this self guided tour. The tour is appropriate for all ages.

Sncewips Heritage Museum – West Kelowna – What does it mean to be Syilx? Join the Sncewips Heritage Museum for their new exhibit that emphasizes the voices and creativity of the Syilx people.

Ella Lamoureux and Rez Daddy Present: Indigenous and Proud – Lake Country (30 km from Kelowna) – In recognition of Truth and Reconciliation Day, Ella Lamoureux and Rez Daddy are holding a powerful evening of Indigenous Pride raising funds for the Indian Residential School Survivors Society and 2 Spirits in Motion Society. This is a ticketed event.

Museum and Archives of Vernon – Vernon – The Vernon Museum will be hosting a special exhibit that honors the lost children and survivors of residential schools, their families and communities. Short films will be played and a discussion circle will be held. Registration for the discussion circle is required.

Kamloops Indian Residential School Monument – Kamloops -Take part in an afternoon of remembrance, acknowledgements, and celebrations. There will be a moment of silence, a tribute to Kenneth C. Jensen, and a book launch and conversation for Tsqelmucwilc: The Kamloops Indian Residential School – Resistance and a Reckoning by Celia Haig-Brown.

photo by Trevor Crawley, Cranbrook Daily Townsman

Kootenay Rockies:

The ?aq’am Community Community Events – Cranbrook – Residents and visitors of Cranbrook have a weekend of activities available to them. On Thursday night people are invited to learn about powwow protocol, regalia, drums and dances, as they prepare for the powwow on Saturday. On Friday there is a Truth and Reconciliation Walk starting at St Eugene Mission Building, a former residential school. Lunch will be provided with a youth open mic until 4:30 pm. On Saturday there will be a ?aq’amnik school traditional powwow and a feast.

National Day for Truth and Reconciliation – Trail (9 km from Rossland)- An all ages event that includes an Action Walk, storytelling, interactive learning, and food by donation.

Nelson Community Event – Nelson – The West Kootenay Métis are hosting an event intended to celebrate culture, and reflect on the recognition of Indigenous peoples in Canada, and bring together people to reflect around reconciliation. There will be drumming, speakers, and Indigenous vendors.

Ceremony of Remembrance at Spirit Square – Golden – The Métis Nation Columbia River is putting on events in Golden. Starting with a Ceremony of Remembrance with a bench unveiling, speeches, drumming, and fiddling. In the afternoon there will be an unveiling of a new mural, then an elders lunch. At 3 p.m there will be a showing of a locally created film about the life journey of Robert Louie Sr., a survivor of the Cranbrook residential school.


Community Event – Sooke – Come together at the Sooke Library for an event hosted by Sooke 4 Truth and Reconciliation. T’Sou-ke First Nation Elder, Shirley Alphonse, will be giving a blessing to begin the ceremony and the ceremony will be hosted by Monique Pat, a member T’Sou-Ke First Nation.

Northern BC:

National Day for Truth & Reconciliation – Prince George – An event will be hosted at Lheidli T’enneh Memorial Park from 2 to 3 p.m. It will be a solemn and reflective time with a healing ceremony, storytelling, singing and drumming.

Orange Shirt Day Film Screening & Book Giveaway – Smithers – Smithers Public Library and the Bulkley Valley Museum will have a free screening of the short film “North Boys: The Story of Jimmy & Charlie” at The Old Church. Stay afterwards for a discussion, and the book give away.

Community Walk for Truth and Reconciliation – Prince Rupert – Meet at the Prince Rupert Middle School track between 1 p.m and 5 p.m for the Community Walk for Truth and Reconciliation.

If you are unable to attend any events, or your city isn’t offering any, there are endless online resources available! Here is a collection of links from Reconciliation Canada. Many local book shops have sections for Indigenous Authors, Spotify has playlists for Indigenous Artists, and many streaming services have sections for movies and shows made by Indigenous creators.

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