National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

Today marks the first federal statutory holiday National Day of Truth and Reconciliation. We encourage all settlers to Canada to take this day to reflect on the state-sanctioned genocide conducted through the residential ‘school’ program and its ongoing impacts on survivors, their families, and the communities.

Below is a list of resources and events happening all over British Columbia. We encourage everyone to take time today to read, learn, witness, and commit to acting against colonial violence. 

Mental health supports available

Former residential school students can call 1-866-925-4419 for emotional crisis referral services and information on other health supports from the Government of Canada.

Indigenous peoples across Canada can also go to The Hope for Wellness Help Line 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for counselling and crisis intervention.

Call the toll-free Help Line at 1-855-242-3310 or connect to the online chat.


The Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s 94 Calls to Action can be found here.

First Nations Child and Family Caring Society

CBC’s “Beyond 94” website

Orange Shirt Society

United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

Reclaiming Power and Place: The Final Report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls

Spirit Bear: Honouring Memories, Planting Dreams

Project of Heart

Historica Canada: Indigenous History

Labour and Archives Canada: First Nations

The National Indian Residential School Crisis Line has been set up to provide 24/7 support to residential school survivors and others who are affected. Call: 1 (866) 925-4419


Webinar, Sept. 30, 8 a.m.: Squamish Stories with Kung Jaadee

Webinar, Sept. 30, 7 p.m.: Suffer the Little Children: Tamara Starblanket on genocide, Indigenous Nations and the Canadian State (with Ketty Nivyabandi, Secretary General, Amnesty International Canada)

Tk’emlúps Nation extends invitation to mark National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

How to watch and listen to National Day for Truth and Reconciliation September 30. CBC link here.

National Day for Truth and Reconciliation hosted by Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund. All content is accessible on Thursday, September 30, 2021.  For more information and full event details visit the Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund website.

Truth and Reconciliation Talking Circle hosted by University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC). (September 30, 2021, 10:00 am). This 90-minute event is open to everyone. National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation’s website.

Bent Arrow Presents Orange Shirt Day (September 30, 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.). Facebook Live @BentArrowYEG. Link here.

Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc worldwide drumming circle (September 30, 2021, 2:15 pm). Tk’emlúps te Lex̱éywa Art Activism: A recalling of a residential school experience. Link here.


Lex̱éywa Art Activism: A recalling of a residential school experience. University of the Fraser Valley, Abbotsford Campus, Evered Hall – S1114 9:00 am – 8:00 pm. Contact [email protected] for more information.

Truth Marking Walk (September 30, 2021, 4:00 pm gather, 5:00 pm walk). Information package attached.

Drum for the Children: Orange Shirt Day/National Day of Truth and Reconciliation, Lafarge Lake. (September 30, 2021, 2:00 pm). Link here.

Dawson Creek
Orange Shirt Day March, N.A.R. Park. (September 30, 2021, 3:00 pm). This annual march honours all those who have been affected by the Indian Residential School experience. Participants are encouraged to wear orange. More information and event details can be located on the event organizers’ Facebook page.

Family Orange Shirt Days, Okanagan Heritage Museum. (September 30, 2021, 12:00 pm – 4:00 pm, and October 2, 2021, 10:00 am). Okanagan Heritage Museum. Link here.

Maple Ridge
National Day for Truth and Reconciliation Community Vigil, Memorial Peace Park. (September 30, 2021, 7:00 pm). Link here.

National Day of Truth and Reconciliation with Phyllis Webstad (September 30, 2021,11:00 am). Poster attached.

Honouring Our Children & Survivors on National Day for Truth and Reconciliation (September 30, 2021, 10:00 am). Link here.

Port Alberni
Orange Shirt Day Walk, Meet at the Harbour Key. (September 30, 2021, 11:00 am). Poster attached.

Port Moody
Honouring the Children: Orange Shirt Day, Noons Creek Hatchery. (September 30, 2021, 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm) Link here.

Prince George
National Truth & Reconciliation Day at Lheidli T’enneh Memorial Park. (September 30th, 11:00 am to 4:00 pm). Link here.

Prince Rupert
Truth and Reconciliation Walk, Prince Rupert Middle School Track and Field. (September 30, 2021, 1:00 pm  – 5:00 pm). Link here.

South Surrey & White Rock
Semiahmoo First Nation leads a Walk for Reconciliation beginning at 1 p.m. with opening remarks at the Grand Chief Bernard Charles Memorial Plaza, 15400-block of Marine Drive, White Rock. Link here.

Every Child Matters 5K Walk – Tears for the Children, Hope for the Future, Millennium Trail. (Sept. 30, 2 to 4 p.m.). Link here.

Orange Shirt Day Elders’ Walk with the Britannia Centre. (Sept. 30, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.). Link here.

Xweýene:msta:m ?əkwəsqwel, seýeḿ (Sept. 30, noon) Šxʷƛ̓ənəq Xwtl’e7énḵ Square 850 W. Georgia Street. Link here.

Orange Shirt Day: Beans (Filmmaker Q+A) at the Rio Theatre. (Sept. 30, 4:00 pm). Link here.

Orange Shirt Day: Don’t Say its Name (BC Premiere/Director Q+A) at the Rio Theatre. (Sept. 30, 7 p.m.). Link here.

National Reconciliation Day Ride, starting and ending at Centennial Square. (Sept. 30, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.). Capital Bike and Victoria Orange Shirt Day are hosting a bike ride in recognition of National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, with stops at locations of significance to the Lekwungen and W̱SÁNEĆ people where organizers will share stories about each stop’s history. Link here.

ReconciliAction Oak Bay, at the Sno’uyutth Welcome Pole in front of Oak Bay High School, 2121 Cadboro Bay Rd. (Sept. 30, 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.). A group of community organizations invites residents to an event honouring residential school survivors, their families and the children who never came home. Members of the Songhees Nation will be present to share their wisdom. Link here.

Unveiling of territorial acknowledgement plaque, Hampton Park, 3401 Tillicum Road. (Sept. 30, 11 a.m.). Hampton Little League is unveiling a permanent sign in the park acknowledging the traditional territory of the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations.

Xe xe Smun’ eem-Victoria Orange Shirt Day: Every Child Matters Ceremony (Sept. 30, 12 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.). Link here.

Open house at Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, 1040 Moss Street. (Sept., 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.). The art gallery is welcoming visitors to view their two current exhibitions for free, which offer starting points for conversations around reconciliation. Holding Ground is an Indigenous-led exhibition that examines the history and continuation of Indigenous resistance. Link here.

ReconciliAction Oak Bay is hosting a film screening of Picking Up the Pieces: The Making of the Witness Blanket, Canadian College of Performing Arts, 1701 Elgin Road. (Oct. 1, 7 p.m.). Link here.

Williams Lake
Williams Lake First Nation will be holding a ceremony on Sept. 30 to honour the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. The ceremony will start at 1 p.m. at the St. Joseph’s Mission site, which will then be followed by a vehicle procession to the Arbor, at which there will be a drum circle at 2:15 p.m. Link here.

Story Walk (self-guided) – Kiwanis Park, 198 4th Ave North. (Sept. 30, all day). Link here.


  1. Read the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s Reports and Calls to Action. Link here.
  2. Familiarize yourself with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Link here.
  3. Sign on to the Change.Org petition created by BCTF members Rick Joe and Peggy Janicki. Link here.
  4. Find out what First Nations Territory you reside on and make a point of Acknowledging it. Link here.
  5. Understand the symbolism of the orange shirt. Link here.
  6. Read Indigenous authors and watch Indigenous movies, buy Indigenous-made gifts, listen to podcasts and follow Indigenous news sources. Link here.
  7. Create a Back Pocket Reconciliation Plan. Link here.


Melissa Chirino


BCFS Chairperson, Advocate & International student from Curaçao