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We Stand Together

On May 23, the First Nations community was shaken when the remains of 200 “probable” unmarked graves of First Nations children were found on what was once a residential school in Kamloops, B.C. A year after this discovery, the number has entered the thousands. 

These are the voices of our First Nations pained by the loss, frustrated by systemic racism and oppression, and the stories of survivors who lived through horrific conditions at these schools. It’s also an opportunity to talk about truth, reconciliation, and unity, building communities and working towards a brighter future.

We Stand Together is the 2021 Canadian Ethnic Media Award of Journalistic Excellence in the podcast category.

Indian Residential School Survivors Society

A helpline for residential school survivors can be reached at 1-866-925-4419.

The Indian Residential School Survivors Society is a British Columbia-based organization providing services to residential school survivors for over 20 years. It started by helping residential school survivors navigate the court systems and has since expanded to help residential school survivors and engage in community education for Indigenous and non-Indigenous people. You can donate here

latest episodes

Dorothy Visser is a residential school survivor. Almost 83 years old, Dorothy remembers life before residential school and shares what she experienced in the residential school, both good and bad.
Dorothy’s focus is on healing her communities through Language, culture and faith.

It feels immoral to celebrate and have fireworks when a  majority of your neighbours are holding a funeral for 1,323 undocumented  First Nation’s children, especially when the numbers of these horrific discoveries continue to climb rapidly. July 1, on Portage & Main at 1 pm, three individuals are inviting the Winnipeg community not to celebrate the country that tried to remove its Indigenous People but to join together for an Every Child Matters Walk. The mission is to increase awareness of what has and is happening to Indigenous communities and identify the children buried at residential schools, bringing them home, and giving a safe space for survivors. Their truths deserve to be amplified and validated after being silenced for so long.

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Vivian Ketchum is a residential school survivor and has healed enough to share her story. With the news of the 751 discovery of 751 unmarked graves near a former Saskatchewan residential school, awareness of this institution needs to continue to ensure these stories are not forgotten. U Multicultural is sharing the stories of Indigenous people as a part of the “We Stand Together” initiative for residential schools awareness.

The news of these lost children pained Nii Gaani Aki Inini (Leading Earth Man), Elder Dr. David Courchene of The Turtle Lodge International Centre for Indigenous Education and Wellness in Sagkeeng First Nation. He now turns his thoughts to today’s and tomorrow’s children and asking what sort of world will we leave for them.

Ray (Coco) Stevenson is a well-known traditional singer and drummer from Manitoba. Ray shared his thoughts and feeling upon hearing the news of the 215 children and the devastating effect Residential Schools had on survivors living in Winnipeg.

Gerry (Gramma) Shingoose is a residential school survivor attending Muscowequan Residential School from 1962 to 1971. Gramma Shingoose shares her thoughts on the 215 children found and her traumatic experiences, which were residential school.
Since Sunday, May 30, Manitoba’s First Nations members have been holding a four-day ceremony in front of Manitoba’s Legislative building, honouring the lives of the 215 children who were found and honouring the survivors for their truths resiliency, and stories.
Organizer Alayh McIvor shares her thoughts and feelings on this haunting news.