Welcome to the second year of Honouring Reconciliation: Hearing the Truth
As we continue to honour Indigenous peoples in Canada, we will expand our awareness of the strength and resilience Indigenous peoples have shown in the face of intolerance, a lack of understanding and racism.
In 2009, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC) began a multi-year process to listen to survivors, communities and others affected by the Residential School system. In 2015, the TRC released a report—Honouring the Truth, Reconciling for the Future—that included 94 Calls to Action to "redress the legacy of residential schools and advance the process of Canadian reconciliation.” The report outlines that “governments, churches, educational institutions, and Canadians from all walks of life are responsible for taking action on reconciliation in concrete ways, working collaboratively with Aboriginal peoples. Reconciliation begins with each and every one of us."
As a public institution that supports learning for adults and youth in our community, our Library has an important role to play in reconciliation.
2017 marked the beginning of the Library's Honouring Reconciliation programming to expand understanding of local Indigenous history, the impacts of colonialism and its ongoing effects on Indigenous peoples. For information on our 2017 activities please visit our Honouring Reconciliation 2017 webpage.
The Library recognizes that Honouring Reconciliation programs and activities are just a beginning; sustaining meaningful reconciliation is an ongoing practice that will shape our community for generations to come.
We acknowledge the Squamish Nation, the Tsleil-Waututh Nation and the Musqueam People, who since time immemorial have lived on the land now referred to as the Greater Vancouver and Sea to Sky regions.
Explore a selection of titles from a list curated by Chief Robert Joseph of Reconciliation Canada.
Reading Challenge booklets are available at the Information Desk. Visit our display on the Main Floor.
A special event celebrating the beginning of the Library's 2018 Honouring Reconciliation: Hearing the Truth program and the launch of the Reading Challenge was held July 5 in the Main Hall of the Library. Chepximiya Siyam' / Chief Janice George of the Squamish Nation (centre) gave a traditional welcome followed by remarks by Charlene Seward of Reconciliation Canada (right). Pat Cumming, West Vancouver Memorial Library, (left).
Image courtesy of Reconciliation Canada.
Discussions based on the themes of two powerful books, facilitated by Library staff.
Participants will discuss Richard Wagamese's powerful novel Indian Horse, which portrays the life of an Ojibway man who struggles to find peace by facing his traumatic past, telling his story and taking steps towards healing, and Wab Kinew's intimate memoir The Reason You Walk, in which he shares the story of his relationship with his father, a prominent Anishinaabe Chief and residential school survivor, and their journey of personal and cultural reconciliation. Registration is required.
A Community Film Screening of Indian Horse, an adaptation of Richard Wagamese's award-winning novel.
With a traditional welcome from Chief Janice George and ceremonial song and dance performance by Bob Baker and the Eagle Song Dancers.
This moving film sheds light on the dark history of Canada's Residential Schools and the indomitable spirit of Indigenous peoples. Free admission. No registration is required.
Thursday, September 27, 6:30 – 9 p.m., Kay Meek Theatre.
Presented by West Vancouver Memorial Library and Kay Meek Arts Centre with the participation of members of the Squamish Nation.
KAIROS Blanket Exercise
An opportunity to experience Canadian history from an Indigenous perspective.
Developed by KAIROS Canada, this participatory exercise covers over 500 years of history. Registration opens August 21 at 10 a.m.
Tuesday, September 18, 6:30 p.m., Welsh Hall.
Learn about, experience first-hand and celebrate local Indigenous culture and traditions in activities led by members of the Squamish Nation.
Indigenous Plant Walk – Learn about reconnecting with the land through Indigenous plant practices, beginning with a workshop at Sk'iwitsut House, followed by an hour-long walk through the park. Led by ethnobotanist Leigh Joseph. Registration is required.
Saturday, October 20, 10 a.m. - 12 p.m., Lighthouse Park.
Indigenous Language Revitalization
Linguist and community member Dr. Peter Jacobs will lead this talk on Indigenous language revitalization. No registration required.
Tuesday, October 23, 7 - 8:30 p.m., Welsh Hall.
Coast Salish Wool Weaving Workshop
Join accomplished weavers and instructors Chepximiya Siyam' Janice George and Skwetsimeltxw Willard 'Buddy' Joseph for an introduction to traditinal wool weaving techniques and traditions. Registration opens Monday, October 22 at 10 a.m.
Saturday, November 17, 1 - 4 p.m., Welsh Hall.
In the Art Gallery
Connections Through Traditions
This exhibition showcases two artists from the Squamish Nation, Kwakwee Baker and Spelexílh Anjeanette Dawson. Both artists honour their teachers and ancestors and continue the cycle of passing their skills down to the next generation.
Spelexílh Anjeanette Dawson is a Squamish educator and wool weaver. In addition to working with local elementary schools, she has taught cedar basket and weaving classes throughout the Lower Mainland. Her blankets, headbands and memorial sashes have been commissioned for private collections as well as for ceremonial purposes. Spelexílh created a Coast Salish shawl for the opening ceremony of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics.
Kwakwee Baker is an Indigenous multimedia artist based in West Vancouver. Born in Morocco, and of Squamish, Kwaguilth, Tlingit-Haida and Celtic descent, Kwakwee creates art that incorporates his diverse travels and cultural experiences. In addition to carving wooden masks and totem poles in cedar, Kwakwee also transforms and applies Indigenous detail to skateboards, cars and apparel.
On display in the Art Gallery through August 21.
Presented in partnership with the Ferry Building Gallery.
Bentwood Box Image: Carved by Coast Salish artist Luke Marston, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Bentwood Box is a lasting tribute to all Indian Residential School Survivors. The carved panels represent the unique cultures of former First Nations, Inuit and Métis .