There is very special event at the University of British Columbia on April 1 and all are welcome to attend.The University’s Ceremonies department announces the raising of the reconciliation pole which will be installed in the manner of a traditional Haida pole raising.
You may have experienced the “Speaking of Memory” exhibit which was at the Museum of Anthropology in 2014. It was an opportunity to meet people who had been in the St. Michael’s Indian School in Alert Bay. It was a powerful way to hear first hand the uprooting of a culture through the banishment of children into a foreign dormitory and educational system.
Master carver Jim Hart has sculpted this pole “which recognizes the complex aspects of reconciliation related to Indian Residential Schools, which were instituted by the federal government of Canada in the second half of the nineteenth century, and operated for more than 100 years, with the last school closing in 1996. Located across Canada, the schools separated an estimated that 150,000 children from their parents, families and culture. Many students died in the schools and many more suffered severe forms of psychological, physical and sexual abuse. Both Reconciliation Pole and the Dialogue Centre provide ways to develop an understanding of the history and lasting effects of the schools, not only on Indigenous peoples, but on Canadian society as a whole.”
Honouring a Time Before, During and After Canada’s Indian Residential Schools
Saturday, April 1, 2017
Main Mall, between Agronomy Road and Thunderbird Boulevard
UBC’s Point Grey Campus
The University of British Columbia is located on the traditional, ancestral and unceded territory of the Musqueam First Nation.
This event is happening rain or shine, please come prepared with warm clothing.
A few hundred people will be pulling ropes to help raise the pole. There will be a ceremony director and then sub directors at each rope (approximately five or six ropes in all) who will tell the raisers what to do, when to pull, etc. The process will take approximately 1 – 1.5 hours.
Download the formal invitation (PDF).