This year long tragedy has underscored the need to continue to honour the Indigenous Children who were deprived of their right to a childhood and a full life. Unfortunately, all evidence points to the fact that there still remains more Indigenous children yet to be found and whose bodies were never located or acknowledged. It is imperative that every single one of these children be found and given the honour that they and their loved ones deserve.
Residential Schools were established in 1883 by the Canadian Government in order to “get rid of the Indian problem.” Up until 1997, an estimated 150,000 Indigenous children throughout Canada were forced into these mostly church-run schools, where they were prohibited from speaking Indigenous languages and practising their own culture, and underwent severe emotional, physical, and sexual abuse. Because of the abhorrent levels of neglect and malnutrition, coupled with the high rates of disease, Indigenous attendees faced mortality rates that ranged from 40% to 60%. Throughout the sordid history of residential schools, a reported 4,100 children are believed to have perished, although that number could be as high as 15,000.
“It has been a bittersweet year since the uncovering of these unmarked mass graves, the tragedy of these young lives sparked international attention and shined a light on the experiences and stories of Residential School Survivors and a piece of Canada’s dark history. The support shown by non-Indigenous Canadians in solidarity has been heart- warming and their eagerness to learn about these experiences has been a great first step towards achieving justice and overall public awareness,” said Teresa Edwards, Executive Director and In-House Legal Counsel at the LHF.
The LHF is a national, Indigenous-led, charitable organization that has been work into promote healing and Reconciliation in Canada for over 20 years. The LHF’s goal is to educate and raise awareness about the history and existing intergenerational impacts of the Residential and Day School Systems and subsequent Sixties Scoop on Indigenous (First Nations, Inuit, and Métis) Survivors, their descendants, and their communities to promote hope and healing in Canada. The LHF works to encourage people to address discrimination and injustices in order to contribute to the equality, dignity, and respectful treatment of Indigenous Peoples and to foster Reconciliation. To purchase the LHF’s Orange T-Shirt or to donate to the LHF, or for more information about the LHF visit the Legacy of Hope Foundation website at www.legacyofhope.ca. Our charitable number is 863471520RR0001.
The LHF is working on making its other exhibitions available online. LHF also has curriculum from K-12 and for adults, along with Activity Guides, aimed at educating Canadians about Indigenous history and the shared history of Residential and Day Schools, the Sixties Scoop, and other colonial acts of oppression. The LHF works to develop empathy and understanding so as to eliminate racism and foster Reconciliation in Canada.
Legacy of Hope Foundation
Legacy of Hope Foundation
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