In recognition of the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation and Orange Shirt Day, Wesley Hall will be lit orange during the evenings next week and The University of Winnipeg will be closed on Friday, September 30.
Throughout the week, special events, learning opportunities, and activities will be dedicated to honouring Residential School Survivors and learning from Indigenous peoples and perspectives. The UWSA will also be hosting events on campus.
Monday, September 26
In front of Wesley Hall, at 9:30 am, the University will be installing artwork created by Kendra Gierys that commemorates Orange Shirt Day. This will be followed by the raising of the Every Child Matters flag at 10:00 am, with remarks from Dr. Todd Mondor, President and Vice-Chancellor, and Angeline Nelson, Acting Indigenous Engagement Lead.
As part of the Weweni Indigenous Scholars Speaker Series, there will be a special presentation by Dr. Mary Jane McCallum, a Senator and Residential School Survivor, from 1:00 to 2:00 pm in Convocation Hall.
Wednesday, September 28
From 11:30 am to 1:30 pm in the Quad (or on the first floor of Centennial Hall, in the case of rain), the Wii Chiiwaakanak Learning Centre team will be distributing Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action booklets, Answering the Calls books, cupcakes, stickers, and Every Child Matters window hangings.
Thursday, September 29
We encourage all UWinnipeg faculty, staff, and students to wear orange shirts.
Orange Shirt Day began in Williams Lake, BC in 2013 at a commemorative event for the Survivors of St. Joseph Mission Residential School. The idea of wearing shirts to remember the experiences of Survivors came from the story of Phyllis Webstad. In 1974, at the age of six, Phyllis was forced to attend St. Joseph Mission. She was proud to wear a brand-new orange shirt to school that day but, upon arrival, it was cruelly stripped from her and never returned.
Orange Shirt Day has grown to represent the experiences of all Residential School Survivors who live with the memories of not just stolen clothes, but stolen childhoods and families.
Friday, September 30
The University will be closed to recognize the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. This is an opportunity for the UWinnipeg community to take time to reflect and to honour Survivors, their families, and their communities. This can be done by taking part in commemorative community events, and reading, reflecting, and learning more about the history of residential schools and your role in Reconciliation.