Photo description: Members of the BCGEU Indigenous Advisory Committee in front of the Tlúu Xaadaa Naay Longhouse, Old Masset, Haida Gwaii
National Indigenous Peoples Day: 21 Things you can do on June 21st
Activities marking National Indigenous Peoples Day are held from coast to coast to coast on and around June 21st to commemorate and celebrate the rich cultural heritage of Indigenous peoples. These events honour the diverse traditions, resilience, and contributions of Indigenous communities. This year, here are 21 things that you can do on June 21st:
1. Attend an event in your community such as the pancake breakfast and friendship walk at the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre or other events around the province listed here.
2. Support and honour Indigenous children by wearing orange. Orange represents the "Every Child Matters" movement which remembers the countless children whose lives were taken from them through the residential school system.
3. Read the recommendations of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
4. Listen to a CBC Reclaimed playlist or watch the documentary Rumble: Indians who rocked the world.
5. Read the 94 calls to action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
6. Learn more about whose land you are on and learn a greeting in the traditional language.
7. Start listening to an Indigenous-created podcast.
8. Support and amplify Indigenous-owned businesses in your community.
9. Celebrate the history and contributions of two-Spirit peoples and other members of the LGBTQQIA communities during Pride celebrations.
10. Read and celebrate Indigenous authors and storytellers and Indigenous-owned booksellers.
11. Watch the APTN's National Indigenous Peoples Day broadcast on June 21st, 2023.
12. Watch a film from the National Film Board of Canada's catalog of over 200 Indigenous-created films.
13. Learn 21 things you may not have known about the Indian Act.
14. Stand in solidarity with land defenders such as Indigenous Climate Action, RAVEN and Indigenous Environment Network.
15. Learn about and follow these Indigenous trailblazers who are leaders in the arts, journalism, business, culture and share their stories on social media.
16. Challenge yourself to stop using language and talk that perpetuates harmful stereotypes. Here is a helpful guide
17. Do some independent learning on Canada's history of colonialism. Thomas King's An Inconvenient Indian is a good start.
18. Celebrate Indigenous artists at galleries such as the Bill Reid Gallery or other galleries that showcase the rich traditions of different nations.
19. Donate to Indigenous organizations or to residential schools' survivor groups such as the Indian Residential Schools Survivors.
20. Share This Land: A companion resource for Early Childhood Educators to accompany Musqueum short films.
21. Keep learning- even when it's uncomfortable.
This is just a start, and we hope that you have some of your own ideas. And remember, there are 365 days in the year when we should learn, acknowledge, celebrate, and uplift Indigenous peoples and communities!
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