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Funding will promote public awareness and healing for 39 member First Nations

CURTIS LINDSAY, Office of Indigenous Affairs

Ontario is providing $412,500 to support the Anishinabek Nation with a range of initiatives, to educate and inform the public about the history and legacy of the Indian Residential School (IRS) System in its territory, and to help Survivors living in the 39 Anishinabek Nation member First Nations share their stories.

This funding will support commemoration, research and information sharing, as well as education, outreach, and support and advocacy for Survivors, their families, and communities. This funding is in addition to the IRS funding for communities which are leading burial investigations at former IRS sites across Ontario.

In addition, funding will support the implementation of a multi-media campaign, creating programming to combat the negative intergenerational affects caused by Indian Residential Schools while promoting healing and reconciliation. As well, it will also help identify the current resources available within the Anishinabek Nation, to respond to the mental health and trauma-related impact of ongoing and future IRS investigations, and will help address the gaps Survivors continue to face.

“Our government is committed to providing a full range of financial supports for communities and regional organizations like the Anishinabek Nation,” said Greg Rickford, Minister of Indigenous Affairs. “We continue to work with Indigenous partners, to explore opportunities to deepen Ontarians’ collective awareness and understanding of the terrible legacy of the Indian Residential School System, as we advance meaningful reconciliation.”

Ontario continues to seek direction from Indigenous partners on their funding needs for IRS burial investigations and related work, and is committed to ensuring communities and organizations can access funding and provincial supports to undertake this critical work.

“We commend the Ontario Government’s efforts to support Indian Residential School initiatives for Anishinabek communities. This investment will support important public education components of the history, legacy, and impacts Residential Schools have had on our Nation. Most importantly, it will help encourage Survivors and families come together to share their stories of healing, strength, and survival.” stated Grand Council Chief Reg Niganobe, Anishinabek Nation.

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