To honour those who suffered trauma and harm at the former residential school in Kamloops, to their families and communities who are mourning, and to all impacted by this devastating news, BC schools were asked to lower their flags to half-mast until further notice, as a sign of respect. We continue to reflect on all those touched by the news from the Tk‘emlups te Secwepemc First Nation. This is a grim reminder of the trauma of the residential school system and the impacts that remain in our province today.
This discovery can be triggering and we hold everyone in our hearts. The following supports and resources (24/7 support, mental health, school teaching resources, trauma informed practice and more) are available in support of our students, staff, families, communities and all those impacted by this heartbreaking news.
Monday–Friday, 8am–8pm PST & Weekends, 10am–2pm PST:
- Tsow-Tun-Le-Lum Society – 1-888-403-3123
British Columbia Resources:
- Aboriginal Wellness Program – 604-675-2551 or 1-866-884-0888
- Canadian Mental Health Association – British Columbia Division – 1-800-555-8222
- HeretoHelp – 1-800-661-2121
National Crisis Hotlines:
- Kids Help Phone – 1-800-668-6868
- Crisis Services Canada – 1-833-456-4566 or text 45645
- First Nations and Inuit Hope for Wellness Help Line – 1‑855‑242-3310
Mental Health Supports for Staff and Students:
- Healing and Wellness Resources | Indian Residential School History and Dialogue Centre (ubc.ca) – This link provides self-care strategies, several embedded links for students, survivors and family members, community members and Indigenous peoples.
- First Nations Health Authority (fnha.ca) – Comprehensive supports varying from traditional healing, mental wellness, tips guides and resources.
- New Mental Health Supports for Métis People in BC – Métis Nation British Columbia (mnbc.ca) – Pilot program providing Métis youth and adults in B.C. with funding for counselling.
- Publication – Mental Health and Resiliency Supports 2020-05-01b.pdf (fnesc.ca) – Comprehensive list of Mental Health and Resiliency supports from FNESC.
Supports In Place For Staff to Teach About Residential Schools:
- Resources & Supplies (orangeshirtday.org) – This website provides teacher resources, reading materials, videos, history of Orange Shirt Day activities.
- Thalit Sqwelqwel Stories of Truth (greatspirithand.com) – This website has K-12 age appropriate teaching resources/videos/360 virtual tour of St. Mary’s residential school in Mission, B.C. including drone flyovers, etc. and an Elders and Survivors corner. This was created by Elders, Survivors and in consultation with Master Teachers to ensure age suitability. Teachers have resources on Pre-Contact/Residential Schools/Reconciliation/Worldviews.
- Witness Blanket – A National Monument to recognize the atrocities of Indian Residential Schools – This is an excellent website with documentaries, resources, etc.
- Indian Residential Schools and Reconciliation Resources – First Nations Education Steering Committee FNESC – Grade 5, 10, 11/12 eBooks with guided lesson plans, suggested topics, information regarding protocols, supports, etc.
- Suggested Resources | Indian Residential School History and Dialogue Centre (ubc.ca) – Further suggested resources from IRSHDC.
- Náskan Ūxwal (I’m Going Home) Documentary 2017 – YouTube – This documentary is an excellent teaching tool regarding the Kamloops Indian Residential School.
- St Mary’s Documentary – YouTube – Grades 11/12, 35-minute documentary by Bear Image Productions, on St. Mary’s Residential School.
- St. Joseph’s Residential School Stories – YouTube – Brief Documentary on St. Joseph’s Residential School. Stories from survivors including Phyllis Webstad of “Orange Shirt Day” origin.
- BCTF Gladys We Never Knew – eBook intended to be an interactive resource leading educators to resources including videos, documents, articles, activities and more.
- Project of Heart – This website has resources including eBooks, a 6-step learning module that have been used by educators in 1000’s of classrooms from coast to coast.
Trauma Informed Practice:
- The Ministry of Education has developed trauma-informed practice workshop resources based on a Compassionate Learning Communities TIP_Framework.pdf (mytrainingbc.ca). The resources are offered as a way to inspire conversation and connections between educators, schools and districts. The resources identify Truth and Reconciliation Committee (TRC) recommendations, and acknowledges the on-going impact of colonization and historical residential school trauma.
- The trauma-informed resources are intended for anyone who wishes to support professional development sessions for staff, or support awareness sessions, or for individuals to view on their own. The workshop packages are flexible and customizable. They can be used as individual workshops or as a whole professional development suite. School staff, parents/caregivers, and educators can also download brief tip sheets.
- The Resources for Compassionate Learning Communities (mytrainingbc.ca) include four workshop packages under the themes of Understanding, Relationship, Connection, and Capacity. The Relationship workshop package may be particularly helpful during this time as the focus is on educator and staff wellness. The Relationship package of resources provides information on how to support educators and leadership teams with reflective practice, acceptance and compassion. In addition, the resources provide information on secondary trauma, how secondary trauma may show up in our work and how to support individuals experiencing secondary trauma.
Every Child Matters .. we will remember.