Brandon University invites members of the university community to wear orange this Friday, September 29, 2017 in a show of support and reconciliation with all those who have been harmed by the residential school system in Canada.
Orange Shirt Day grew out of an event commemorating the impact of the St. Joseph Mission residential school, which took place in Williams Lake, British Columbia in 2013. Phyllis Webstad, who attended the mission school when she was 6 years old, tells of being excited about starting school and shopping with her granny for a new outfit to wear on the first day of school. She chose a shiny orange shirt, but on the first day of school this new outfit was taken from her, and she never got it back. Phyllis says that the children at this school felt they did not matter. For more information on Orange Shirt Day and its origins visit http://www.orangeshirtday.org/
While it is called Orange Shirt Day, we encourage you to wear anything orange to show your support for this event. Various offices around the university will also be handing out buttons, while supplies last, with an orange shirt and the motto “Every Child Matters”.
If you want to learn more about the history and impact of residential schools in Canada, the John E. Robbins Library is currently hosting the exhibit 100 Years of Loss: Healing the Legacy of the Residential Schools, which is a resource provided by the Legacy of Hope Foundation. Please take some time to explore the exhibit, which is on display in the Gathering Space, at the south end of the main floor space. The library and the Indigenous Peoples’ Centre also have private and semi-private space for for reflection, grief, or healing after viewing.
Additional information is also available online at http://100yearsofloss.ca/en/