Understanding Reconciliation

By: SaskCulture Staff January, 2017

Cultural Areas



AR - 2017

Finding ways to learn about and support the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's (TRC) Calls to Action is very important to SaskCulture's board and staff.

After the TRC Report was released in June 2015, SaskCulture committed time to increase its understanding of Indigenous history, the ongoing impact of residential schools and colonialism, as well as current challenges facing Indigenous communities as they work to engage in healthy, positive growth.

In 2016, SaskCulture brought in Lyndon Linklater, from the Office of the Treaty Commissioner, to speak to its members at the 2016 Annual General Meeting. This session was followed by a more in­depth session for board and staff later in the fall. Linklater 's presentation provided an engaging look into how the system of Canadian colonialism, including the devastating impact of residential schools and systemic racism, has challenged the positive growth of Canada's Indigenous populations.

In October 2016, nearly half of SaskCulture's staff members were among the many who attended the \Mcihitowin conference in Saskatoon. This opportunity provided insight into many issues impacting the Indigenous community in Saskatchewan, as well as a glimpse into the community groups working to bring about change.

Besides attending many other discussions and events linked to the TRC Calls to Action, the SaskCulture staff participated in a buffalo hide-tanning session with SaskCulture Community Engagement Animateur Lorne Kequahtooway, and held another learning day in February 201 7, where it heard from esteemed presenter Eugene Arcand, from Muskeg Lake First Nation, who served on the Indian Residential School Survivors Committee, and explored personal thoughts on reconciliation through a workshop led by Metis and Cree-Dene artist Zoey Pricelys Roy. Both Arcand and Pricelys Roy also presented to members of the cultural community during Heritage Week.

SaskCulture remains committed to continued learning to help ensure staff and volunteers can better understand and support the diversity of culture in the province.