Number TEN has been working and collaborating with First Nation, Inuit, and Metis communities for over 50 years. We have built many friendships, and designed places that respond to our understanding of each communities' history, culture, and aspirations.
But we can do better. We need to build a deeper understanding.
We believe the future of our country depends on it.
Actively participating in National Truth and Reconciliation week is an important step in our collective journey.
Join us in a week of learning, action, and commitments to the future. We encourage everyone to enter this process with an open mind and an open heart.
DAY 1: Jordan's principle
Monday, September 25
About Jordan’s Principle
Jordan’s Principle is a child-first principle named in memory of Jordan River Anderson, a First Nations child from Norway House Cree Nation in Manitoba. Born with complex medical needs, Jordan spent more than two years unnecessarily in hospital while the Province of Manitoba and the federal government argued over who should pay for his at home care. Jordan died in the hospital at the age of five years old, never having spent a day in his family home. Jordan’s Principle aims to make sure First Nations children can access all public services in a way that is reflective of their distinct cultural needs, takes full account of the historical disadvantage linked to colonization, and without experiencing any service denials, delays or disruptions because they are First Nations.
Payment disputes within and between federal and provincial governments over services for First Nations children are not uncommon. First Nations children are frequently left waiting for services they desperately need, or are denied services that are available to other children. This includes services in education, health, childcare, recreation, and culture and language. Jordan's Principle calls on the government of first contact to pay for the services and seek reimbursement later so the child does not get tragically caught in the middle of government red tape.
- from First Nations Child & Family Caring Society
List of Resources for Reading/Listening
Jordan's Principle Handbook | LINK
Spirit Bear Podcast: Jordan's Principle with Charlie Angus
The students invite Charlie Angus, MP for Timmins-James Bay, Ontario, to discuss the history and significance of Jordan's Principle. The Motion in support of Jordan's Principle was brought to the House of Commons in 2007 by Mr. Angus' colleague, Jean Crowder (now retired) | LINK
Jordan River Anderson, The Messenger | 12:15 PM – 1:15
Alanis Obomsawin's 52nd film tells the story of how the life of Jordan River Anderson initiated a battle for the right of First Nations and Inuit children to receive the same standard of social, health and educational services as the rest of the Canadian population | LINK
"We should never forget... it's part of who we are as a nation. And this nation must never forget what it once did to its vulnerable people." - Dr. Murray Sinclair
DAY 2: HISTORY AND RESIDENTIAL SCHOOLS
tuesday, September 26
Sugar Falls: A Residential School Story – David A. Robertson
Abandoned as a young child, Betsy is adopted into a loving family. A few short years later, at the age of 8, everything changes. Betsy is taken away to a residential school. There she is forced to endure abuse and indignity, but Betsy recalls the words her father spoke to her at Sugar Falls-words that give her the resilience, strength, and determination to survive.
Sugar Falls is based on the true story of Betty Ross, Elder from Cross Lake First Nation. We wish to acknowledge, with the utmost gratitude, Betty's generosity in sharing her story. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of Sugar Falls goes to support the bursary program for The Helen Betty Osborne Memorial Foundation.
Sugar Falls: A Residential School Story by David Alexander Robertson | Goodreads
21 Things You May Not Know About The Indian Act – Bob Joseph
Based on a viral article, 21 Things You May Not Know About the Indian Act is the essential guide to understanding the legal document and its repercussion on generations of Indigenous Peoples, written by a leading cultural sensitivity trainer. Since its creation in 1876, the Indian Act has shaped, controlled, and constrained the lives and opportunities of Indigenous Peoples, and is at the root of many enduring stereotypes. Bob Joseph's book comes at a key time in the reconciliation process, when awareness from both Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities is at a crescendo. Joseph explains how Indigenous Peoples can step out from under the Indian Act and return to self-government, self-determination, and self-reliance - and why doing so would result in a better country for every Canadian. He dissects the complex issues around truth and reconciliation, and clearly demonstrates why learning about the Indian Act's cruel, enduring legacy is essential for the country to move toward true reconciliation.
21 Things You May Not Know About the Indian Act: Helping Canadians Make Reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples a Reality by Bob Joseph | Goodreads
A Story of Sports & Survival in Canadian Residential School (NCTR) | LINK
Residential Schools Podcast: Residential Schools is a three-part podcast series created by Historica Canada and hosted by Shaneen Robinson-Desjarlais. It aims to commemorate the history and legacy of residential schools, and honour the stories of First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Survivors, their families, and communities. | LINK
RAIC Webinar "Part One – History and Context" | 12:00 – 1:30
Elder Susan Tatoosh
Simoogit Saa Bax Patrick R. Stewart
1. The impact of the Indian Act on First Nations;
2. The history, intent and impact of Residential and Day Schools;
3. How the Residential School system caused intergenerational trauma; and
4. The purpose of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada Calls to Action.
Consider making a donation to an organization that supports residential school survivors
Learn: Did you, or do you live near a Residential School site? The residential school system separated 150,000 Indigenous children from their families, and the last one closed in 1997. Was one of those schools in the community where you grew up?
Use this interactive map to find out: https://nctr.ca/records/view-your-records/archival-map/
Residential School Timeline: https://nctr.ca/exhibits/residential-school-timeline/
Residential School History: https://nctr.ca/education/teaching-resources/residential-school-history/
"Indigenous women lead from the heart. It is up to us to create a safer world for future generations." - Cora McGuire-Cyrette
DAY 3: MMIWG2S (Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, and Two Spirit)
WEDNESDAY, September 27
Missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls in Canada (MMIWG2S) refers to a human rights crisis that has recently become a topic of discussion within national media. Indigenous women and communities, women’s groups and international organizations have long called for action into the high and disproportionate rates of violence and the appalling numbers of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls in Canada. Prior to the launch of the national public inquiry on 8 December 2015, these calls were continually ignored by the federal government. Described by some as a hidden crisis, Dawn Lavell-Harvard, former president of the Native Women’s Association of Canada, refers to MMIWG as a national tragedy and a national shame. In 2015, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada supported the call for a national public inquiry into the disproportionate victimization of Indigenous women and girls. The National Inquiry’s Final Report was completed and presented to the public on 3 June 2019.
The MMIWG2S crisis is a reality that has affected Indigenous communities in Canada for decades. According to Statistics Canada, the homicide rate for Indigenous victims was seven times higher than the rate for non-Indigenous people in 2020. It is not only a human rights issue but also a public health issue. The high rates of violence experienced by Indigenous women, girls, and two-spirit people have a significant impact on their physical and mental health, contributing to the intergenerational trauma experienced by their communities and families.
Highway of Tears – Jessica McDiarmid
A searing and revelatory account of the missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls of Highway 16, and an indictment of the society that failed them.
For decades, Indigenous women and girls have gone missing or been found murdered along an isolated stretch of highway in northwestern British Columbia. The highway is known as the Highway of Tears, and it has come to symbolize a national crisis.
Journalist Jessica McDiarmid investigates the devastating effect these tragedies have had on the families of the victims and their communities, and how systemic racism and indifference have created a climate where Indigenous women and girls are over-policed, yet under-protected. Through interviews with those closest to the victims—mothers and fathers, siblings and friends—McDiarmid offers an intimate, first-hand account of their loss and relentless fight for justice. Examining the historically fraught social and cultural tensions between settlers and Indigenous peoples in the region, McDiarmid links these cases to others across Canada—now estimated to number up to 4,000—contextualizing them within a broader examination of the undervaluing of Indigenous lives in this country.
Highway of Tears is a powerful story about our ongoing failure to provide justice for missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls, and a testament to their families and communities' unwavering determination to find it.
Highway of Tears: A True Story of Racism, Indifference and the Pursuit of Justice for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls by Jessica McDiarmid | Goodreads
Reclaiming Power and Place: The Final Report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls
Final Report | MMIWG (mmiwg-ffada.ca)
Taken – The Podcast
Eagle Vision's commitment to Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls and their families began when Founding Partner Lisa Meeches (Anishinaabe from Long Plain First Nation) was expecting her first daughter, and had a dream that she needed to use her skills in media to combat this issue. Over the past several years, with the award-winning series Taken, the #SacredMMIWG campaign, and now the Taken podcast, the Eagle Vision team has worked with families, law enforcement, advocates, academics, elders and knowledge keepers across the country to create a platform that helps shed light on these stories, and hopefully will bring new clues to help solve the cases. Please share this 10-part podcast series with your networks, in the hope that these crimes will be solved.
If I Go Missing | 12:30 – 1:30
If I go missing (2019) is a poignant wake up call to the problem of missing Indigenous youth. Brianna Jonnie brings light to the need for equal treatment from law enforcement and communities when young Indigenous women go missing. In the opening sequences of If I Go Missing, Brianna Jonnie, offers tobacco — a sacred medicine for First Nations peoples — on the bank of the notorious Red River, where a crumpled dress is filmed lying by the water’s edge beneath a bridge. The body of Tina Fontaine, 15, was found in this river in the summer of 2014. Jonnie sits on a bench reading a letter she sent to the chief of the Winnipeg police force, as well as other city and government officials, when she was 14.
If I Go Missing | Full Movie - YouTube
Attend a Sisters in Spirit vigil on October 4th. The NWAC's Sisters in Spirit vigil webpage publishes an online list of vigils registered with them. | Event Page | Native Women's Association of Canada (NWAC)
Learn about the REDress Project, observe Red Dress Day on May 5th and/or visit the permanent exhibit at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights | The REDress Project – Jaime Black (jaimeblackartist.com)
Learn about and participate in the Moose Hide Campaign in May | Learn the Issue | Moose Hide Campaign
"We focus on bringing back Indigenous languages, ceremonies, cultures, traditions – all that was lost over the past 150 years. This is how we'll generate hope – for all Canadian people." - Perry Bellegarde
DAY 4: LAND AND CULTURE
THURSDAY, September 28
Historically, a land acknowledgement is a traditional practice shared amongst many Indigenous groups to recognize the land and territory that they are visiting. As peoples, they had extensive trading practices with surrounding communities, so it was greatly important to acknowledge gratitude for visiting another groups territory as well as to share where they came from.
Today, a land acknowledgement remains a way of recognizing and expressing gratitude to the First Nations, Inuit, or Métis land that we are on. For settlers, the act of performing a land acknowledgement is a very basic and fundamental step towards reconciliation between Indigenous Peoples and settlers. However, land acknowledgments go much deeper than just acknowledging who’s land you’re on. To truly understand the importance of a land acknowledgement one would need to look into the historical traumas that plagued Indigenous peoples and what lasting effects they have today.
Read Number TEN’s Land Acknowledgements here: Number TEN Architectural Group - Land Acknowledgement
Braiding Sweetgrass - Robin Wall Kimmerer
As a botanist, Robin Wall Kimmerer has been trained to ask questions of nature with the tools of science. As a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, she embraces the notion that plants and animals are our oldest teachers. In Braiding Sweetgrass, Kimmerer brings these two lenses of knowledge together to take us on “a journey that is every bit as mythic as it is scientific, as sacred as it is historical, as clever as it is wise” (Elizabeth Gilbert).
Drawing on her life as an indigenous scientist, and as a woman, Kimmerer shows how other living beings—asters and goldenrod, strawberries and squash, salamanders, algae, and sweetgrass—offer us gifts and lessons, even if we've forgotten how to hear their voices. In reflections that range from the creation of Turtle Island to the forces that threaten its flourishing today, she circles toward a central argument: that the awakening of ecological consciousness requires the acknowledgment and celebration of our reciprocal relationship with the rest of the living world. For only when we can hear the languages of other beings will we be capable of understanding the generosity of the earth, and learn to give our own gifts in return.
Moon of the Crusted Snow: A Novel - Waubgeshig Rice
With winter looming, a small northern Anishinaabe community goes dark. Cut off, people become passive and confused. Panic builds as the food supply dwindles. While the band council and a pocket of community members struggle to maintain order, an unexpected visitor arrives, escaping the crumbling society to the south. Soon after, others follow.
The community leadership loses its grip on power as the visitors manipulate the tired and hungry to take control of the reserve. Tensions rise and, as the months pass, so does the death toll due to sickness and despair. Frustrated by the building chaos, a group of young friends and their families turn to the land and Anishinaabe tradition in hopes of helping their community thrive again. Guided through the chaos by an unlikely leader named Evan Whitesky, they endeavor to restore order while grappling with a grave decision.
Blending action and allegory, Moon of the Crusted Snow upends our expectations. Out of catastrophe comes resilience. And as one society collapses, another is reborn. | LINK
Our Native Land Podcast
Join Tchadas Leo as we explore all things Indigenous and First Nations! Our Native Land features fun interviews and compelling discussions about Indigenous and First Nations cuisine, culture, heritage, and more from Vancouver Island and around the world. Recorded at CHEK Studios in Victoria, BC, Tchadas is joined by guests of all backgrounds and professions for educational, emotional, and engaging conversations.
Our Native Land | CHEK (cheknews.ca)
The Lake Winnipeg Project – Kevin Settee
The Lake Winnipeg Project is a four-part documentary series that calls attention to stories of ingenuity and resilience in four diverse communities surrounding Lake Winnipeg, at a time when many external forces are imposing change.
Part 1 – Matheson Island
Part 2 – Camp Morningstar
Part 3 – Fisher River
Part 4 – Poplar River
Learn the traditional place names in Indigenous languages and the meaning or origin | Stories from the Land: Indigenous Place Names in Canada - Interactive map on Indigenous place names
Learn the history of the Indigenous territories on which you live, work and play | Whose Land – interactive map to learn about territories
"Reconciliation means finding the courage to look at our past with eyes wide open, unafraid to see our country at its worst, and then, humbly, take steps to heal the damage done."
DAY 5: RECONCILIATION
‘If you want to talk about reconciliation, you better know what you’re talking about. The truth has to come first.’ — Elder Eugene Arcand, Residential School Survivor and Advisor, Truth and Reconciliation Commission Indian Residential School Survivor Committee
The Partners of Number TEN have embraced the Calls to Action as prepared by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. We believe our understanding of the past is critical in our path forward. We believe it is our responsibility to live up to the Truth and Reconciliation Calls for Action. We believe this is a responsibility we must embrace as individuals, as sharers of our land, and as people who love one another.
Our mission is to be allies in Truth and Reconciliation.
There are a number of events happening tomorrow:
Day of Reflection Sacred Fire and Gathering
An Evening in Honour of Truth & Reconciliation – The Colour Orange – An Indigenous Aet Gallery in the Forest at Pineridge Hollow | The Colour Orange
The Break – Katherena Vermette
Winner of the Amazon.ca First Novel Award and a finalist for the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize and the Governor General’s Literary Award, The Break is a stunning and heartbreaking debut novel about a multigenerational Métis–Anishnaabe family dealing with the fallout of a shocking crime in Winnipeg’s North End.
When Stella, a young Métis mother, looks out her window one evening and spots someone in trouble on the Break — a barren field on an isolated strip of land outside her house — she calls the police to alert them to a possible crime.
In a series of shifting narratives, people who are connected, both directly and indirectly, with the victim — police, family, and friends — tell their personal stories leading up to that fateful night. Lou, a social worker, grapples with the departure of her live-in boyfriend. Cheryl, an artist, mourns the premature death of her sister Rain. Paulina, a single mother, struggles to trust her new partner. Phoenix, a homeless teenager, is released from a youth detention centre. Officer Scott, a Métis policeman, feels caught between two worlds as he patrols the city. Through their various perspectives a larger, more comprehensive story about lives of the residents in Winnipeg’s North End is exposed.
A powerful intergenerational family saga, The Break showcases Vermette’s abundant writing talent and positions her as an exciting new voice in Canadian literature.
Our Story: Aboriginal Voices on Canada's Past
Inspired by history, Our Story is a beautifully illustrated collection of original stories from some of Canada’s most celebrated Aboriginal writers.
Asked to explore seminal moments in Canadian history from an Aboriginal perspective, these ten acclaimed authors have travelled through our country’s past to discover the moments that shaped our nation and its people. Drawing on their skills as gifted storytellers and the unique perspectives their heritage affords, the contributors to this collection offer wonderfully imaginative accounts of what it’s like to participate in history. From a tale of Viking raiders to a story set during the Oka crisis, the authors tackle a wide range of issues and events, taking us into the unknown, while also bringing the familiar into sharper focus.
Our Story brings together an impressive array of voices—Inuk, Cherokee, Ojibway, Cree, and Salish to name just a few—from across the country and across the spectrum of First Nations. These are the novelists, playwrights, journalists, activists, and artists whose work is both Aboriginal and uniquely Canadian.
Brought together to explore and articulate their peoples’ experience of our country’s shared history, these authors’ grace, insight, and humour help all Canadians understand the forces and experiences that have made us who we are.
Telling Our Twisted Histories Podcast: Words connect us. Words hurt us. Indigenous histories have been twisted by centuries of colonization. Host Kaniehti:io Horn brings us together to decolonize our minds– one word, one concept, one story at a time.
NCTR: Taking Action Toward Reconciliation
Truth and Reconciliation Week 2023 Public Lunch and Learns Tickets | Eventbrite
Wear orange in honour of the thousands of Survivors of residential schools on National Day for Truth & Reconciliation (September 30th).
Register for one of the following free courses on Indigenous History and Residential Schools:
Indigenous Canada - University of Alberta | Reconciliation Through Indigenous Education - University of British Columbia
Support Indigenous Creators and Businesses. The Government of Canada has an Indigenous Business Directory you can search by city and/or business type. Follow them and Indigenous artists on Instagram or a social media platform.