Orange Shirt Day

Smiley heart donation
Addison making her donation to the Fort Erie Native Friendship Centre.

Niagara Catholic acknowledges the importance of recognizing Orange Shirt Day in schools and sites throughout our Board. This grassroots day sheds important light on the tragedy of the residential school system in Canada and has been adopted by the federal government as the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.

We believe that it is important for our students and staff to listen to the voices in our Indigenous community and to learn from them. Throughout this week students in schools across Niagara Catholic are marking Orange Shirt Day in a variety of ways, some of which are listed below.

  • Wearing Orange Shirt Day shirts in schools and sites in recognition of Orange Shirt Day
  • Watching a variety of films and videos about Orange Shirt Day and Indigenous culture
  • Listening to Indigenous music and podcasts about Indigenous culture and residential schools
  • Listening to guests speakers, including the Board’s Indigenous Lead and Indigenous Graduation Coach, and teacher Nicole Pigeau, as well as others from outside the Board, to hear Indigenous voices
  • Participating in programs to support local and other Indigenous organizations
  • Doing research projects on residential schools and Truth and Reconciliation
  • Creating rock gardens and other tributes and memorials to residential school victims and survivors
  • Participating in Indigenous crafts and activities
  • An Every Child Matters sidewalk chalk event

We are also pleased to spotlight Madison Cabral, a student at Blessed Trinity Catholic Secondary School, who designed this year’s Every Child Matters t-shirt worn throughout the Board, as well as Addison Snider, a Grade 5 student at St. Joseph Catholic Elementary School in Snyder. Addison created and sold Every Child Matters t-shirts through her own business, Smiley Heart, and donated the full proceeds from her sales - $510 - to the Fort Erie Native Friendship Centre.

Learn more about Orange Shirt Day through this short video featuring Phyllis Webstad, telling her story.

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