One week from today – Thursday, September 30th — is the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation, a tribute to victims and survivors of the Indian residential school system.
Ininew Friendship Centre in Cochrane has a full day of events planned, beginning at 7:15am morning with a sunrise service, and culminating with a hand drumming and prayer service at 6:00pm.
Executive director Susan Nelson says it’s important to acknowledge the residential school survivors, and pay respects to the remains of the thousands of children found over the summer.
“With these remains being found, the residential school survivors, their stories now are heard. Many of them came back and they told horrific stories of what happened to them,” says Nelson, adding that those stories are finally being heard.
She believes that the children who didn’t survive can finally be at peace and their remains brought to their proper resting places.
“So I’m hoping and praying that they can link through DNA where they came from with other family’s DNA and send them home for proper burial.”
While Truth and Reconciliation Day will be annual, Nelson says her centre will shed light on the stories throughout the year — possibly monthly.
Details on Thursday’s events are available at the Friendship Centre or on its Facebook page and website.