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Jun  27, 2021

Statement from Board, staff and volunteers of the Aboriginal Friendship Centre of Calgary

 

Our grief continues with the news 751 unmarked graves were discovered on the grounds of the former Marieval Indian Residential School in southeastern Saskatchewan. Only weeks ago, the Aboriginal Friendship Centre of Calgary (AFCC) issued a statement expressing our heartbreak for the families who are impacted by the tragic discovery of the bodies of 215 children in an unmarked grave at the Kamloops Residential School in British Columbia. AFCC extends our prayers to the families of children who attended the Marieval Residential School and asks Creator to embrace you and guide you through your sorrow.

For generations, we have talked about our children who died while attending residential schools across Canada and never came home. Sadly, we anticipate there will be more findings of our lost children as Indigenous people obtain the necessary resources to find these unmarked graves. We are one family, and we share in your grief.

AFCC’s Elder line is open Monday to Friday from 8am to 4pm at 403-801-7482 for individuals in need of support. The Indian Residential Schools Crisis line is available 24/7 for anyone experiencing pain and distress at 1-866-925-4419.

For our non-Indigenous friends, the lives and deaths of these children is a sorrowful reminder of a dark part of Canada’s history. AFCC encourages you to learn more about the history of Indigenous people in Canada. We ask you to reach out to your Indigenous brothers and sisters and ask how I can be an ally in the fight for meaningful progress toward reconciliation. Know that discomfort is a natural response to uncomfortable truths.

As the Commissioners of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission wrote in their July 2015 summary of their final report, “Reconciliation is not an Aboriginal problem; it is a Canadian one.”

 

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May 31, 2021

ON BEHALF OF THE ABORIGINAL FRIENDHSIP CENTRE OF CALGARY’S BOARD, STAFF AND VOLUNTEERS

 

The Aboriginal Friendship Centre of Calgary (AFCC) shares in the heartbreak of families who are impacted by the tragic discovery of the bodies of 215 children in a mass grave at the Kamloops Residential School. AFCC prays for you and asks Creator to embrace you as you and all Indigenous peoples continue our journey of healing.

For generations, unmarked graves of children who died while attending residential schools have been talked about in our communities across Canada. AFCC thanks the Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc for bringing to light the horror of this one discovery for all Canadians. 

AFCC’s Elder line is open Monday to Friday from 8am to 4pm at 403-801-7482 for individuals in need of support. The Indian Residential Schools Crisis line is available 24/7 for anyone experiencing pain and distress at 1-866-925-4419.

For our non-Indigenous friends, the lives and deaths of these children is a sorrowful reminder of a dark part of Canada’s history. AFCC encourages you to learn more about the history of Indigenous peoples in Canada. We ask you to reach out to your Indigenous brothers and sisters and ask how I can be an ally in the fight for meaningful progress toward reconciliation. Know that discomfort is a natural response to uncomfortable truths.

As the Commissioners of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) wrote in their July 2015 summary of their final report, “Reconciliation is not an Aboriginal problem; it is a Canadian one.”