September 28, 2023

September 30 is the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.

This annual day of remembrance is a time for reflection, education, and action to recognize the atrocities of the residential school system and address their ongoing impact on survivors, families, and communities.

We encourage our network members to use this time to reflect on what Truth and Reconciliation means to them. This is our shared Canadian history. Reconciliation can take many forms including learning about Canada’s residential schools and listening to the stories of survivors. We have provided a list of resources below to guide you in your personal journey.

This year, the theme of National Truth and Reconciliation Week (September 25-30) is “Honouring Survivors.” We are grateful to all the Knowledge Keepers and residential school survivors who continue to bravely share their experiences and speak their truth.

A message from the Indigenous Peoples’ Engagement and Research Council Co-Chairs:

“September 30th is the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, and this year’s theme is honoring survivors. We invite readers to take a moment and reflect. This trauma is still raw, and many members of the Indigenous Peoples’ Engagement and Research Council (IPERC) have or know individuals who have survived and continue to survive the ongoing intergenerational trauma from the residential school system and the 60’s scoop.

Our hearts are also with all the children who did not make it home. We encourage everyone to include and acknowledge Indigenous peoples in their work everyday, not just once a year. Without acknowledging the Truth in Truth & Reconciliation we cannot move forward. We need ReconciliACTION! Please participate in the many different activities planned in your community and do your part.” – Arlene Desjarlais and Cathy Woods, IPERC Co-Chairs

What you can do:

Education and cultural competency are important for everyone on their journey to Truth and Reconciliation. The Wabishki Bizhiko Skaanj Learning Pathway provides several resources to enhance knowledge and awareness of racial biases, Indigenous voices and stories, the impact of colonization on Indigenous health, and culturally safe health research practices.

One of these resources is Knowledge Keepers in Research, a video series and guidebook that support researchers to honour Indigenous ways of knowing and incorporate them into practice. The videos incorporate teachings from Knowledge Keepers that help researchers acknowledge history and demonstrate openness to another way of being.

The National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation is offering educational opportunities and resources throughout Truth and Reconciliation Week. A series of daily “lunch and learns” will explore historical traumas, ongoing discrimination, and actions towards Reconciliation. You can register for these free sessions here. Additional resources are listed below:

Truth and Reconciliation Week 2023 (
Orange Shirt Day at UBC (Indian Residential School History and Dialogue Centre)
Orange Shirt Society
Indian Residential School Survivors Society
Find your local Friendship Centre (National Association of Friendship Centres)
Wabishki Bizhiko Skaanj Learning Pathway
Knowledge Keepers in Research
Why Tamara Beardy ran 905km across Manitoba (read about an IPERC member’s journey to raise awareness of diabetes, kidney disease, and other issues faced by First Nations individuals)

More Network Updates

Connect with us!

Subscribe to learn more about what we do, why it matters, and how you can get involved!