What is National Day for Truth and Reconciliation?

September 30 is the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. This day honours the children who never returned home and Survivors of residential schools, as well as their families and communities. Please take the time to acknowledge and better understand the painful history and ongoing impacts of residential schools. This is a vital component of the reconciliation process.

City of Oshawa Events – Honouring the Children – Orange Ribbon Memorials 

Bawaajigewan Aboriginal Community Circle and the City of Oshawa invite community members to join us as we commemorate the children lost to residential schools. There are five locations in Oshawa for residents to bring and tie orange ribbons as a sign of respect to these Indigenous children and their families, and to support healing in Indigenous Communities across Canada.

Orange Ribbon Locations: 

  • North – Simcoe/Columbus Rd Parkette
  • South – Lakeview Park
  • East – Delpark Homes Centre
  • West – Civic Recreation Complex
  • Central – Oshawa City Hall 

Every Child Matters Flag Raising Ceremony 

On September 23 at 4:00 p.m. the City of Oshawa will be raising the Every Child Matters flag at City Hall, followed by a ceremony at the Every Child Matters Memorial Garden on King St. Residents are invited to attend and pay tribute to Indigenous children who endured the residential school era. 

For more information visit oshawa.ca.

Durham Region Events

At a memorial on September 24 at 11:30 a.m., a commemorative orange crosswalk—designed by visual artist, Jon Colwell, a proud member of Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation—and accompanying plaque will be unveiled near the south entrance to the Durham Regional Headquarters building. The All Our Relations Métis Drum Circle will honour the children and families through drumming and song. Please access the grounds from the north entrance on Rossland Road. Follow the directional arrows to the south parking lot. We will meet at the entrance off Garden Street.

For more information, visit durham.ca/Reconciliation.

Commemorate National Day for Truth and Reconciliation Through Learning

The National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation (N.C.T.R.) was created as part of the mandate of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (T.R.C.). The T.R.C. was tasked with listening to Survivors, their families, communities and others affected by the residential school system and to educate Canadians about their experiences. The resulting collection of statements, documents and other materials now form the foundation of the N.C.T.R. Archives and Collections. 

Oshawa and Durham Region Métis Council

Attend Oshawa and Durham Region Métis Council’s Orange Shirt Day event on September 25 starting at 10:30 a.m. at St. Paul’s United Church, Bowmanville to hear guest speaker Mitchell Case, Region 4, Regional Councillor Métis Nation of Ontario. You can also take part in beading, drumming and voyagers workshops from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. 

Oshawa Public Libraries

On September 30 from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the McLaughlin Branch, Alderville First Nation Author Brian Beaver will speak about his book on the history of Alderville First Nation and the significance of its lands and people. In honour of the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, he will also share his knowledge of the history of residential schools. Registration is required.

Plain Talk: Residential Schools

This educational module was developed by the Assembly of First Nations and is part of the “It’s Our Time” Educational Toolkit. This module will guide you through the history of residential schools, the experiences of the children who were sent there, as well as the public response and ongoing impact of residential schools in Canada.

Scugog Council for the Arts

Join Scugog Council for the Arts and the Township of Scugog at Scugog Community Recreation Centre on September 29 at 6:30 p.m. for a 90-minute public talk with Chief Kelly LaRocca, LL.B, on the social, legal and political history impacting Indigenous Peoples in Canada. 

University of Alberta Online Course

Enroll in Indigenous Canada, a 12-lesson Massive Open Online Course from University of Alberta’s Faculty of Native Studies that explores the different histories and contemporary perspectives of Indigenous peoples living in Canada. 

Woodland Cultural Centre Virtual Tour

This virtual tour is run by the Woodland Cultural Centre and will guide you through the former Mohawk Institute Indian Residential School, giving the history of the institution and sharing the experiences of the children who lived there. Viewers will see different rooms inside the school, from the girls’ and boys’ dormitories, the cafeteria, laundry room, and other rooms throughout the building as well as hear interviews from five survivors. 

Supporting Culture in Oshawa

The Culture team wants to share information and news about upcoming arts and culture events in Oshawa. Content may be included in upcoming issues of the Culture Counts Newsletter or shared on our social media channels.


About the Author

Bryen writes about local Durham community news, including regional events, municipality updates, entertainment, lifestyle, and the great outdoors. Email him directly if you want your business profiled or know a community member that deserves recognition - bryen@thelocalbizmagazine.com