“The best charity is to reconcile between people.”1
[Reported saying of Prophet Mohammed ﷺ]
Since 2013, Orange Shirt Day has been commemorated every September 30th across the country as a way of honouring the tens of thousands of Indigenous children who were forced to attend residential schools. As a response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Call to Action #80, this year Orange Shirt Day will be commemorated as the first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation on September 30. Today we remember and reflect upon the legacy of the residential school system in Canada and honour the healing journey of survivors and their families.
Earlier this year, Islamic Relief Canada publicly declared our solidarity with Indigenous peoples in Canada and around the world through our Commitment to Truth and Reconciliation statement. In this statement, we acknowledged that there cannot be reconciliation in the absence of truth.
It is for this reason that we are commemorating the first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation by engaging in truth-telling and awareness activities. Islamic Relief Canada has been, and will once again, provide workshops for staff to expand their knowledge of residential schools and the legacy of Canadian settler-colonialism. Our regional teams are working with mosques and interfaith groups across the country to educate our community on the harms of the past and what it means to be an ally in working for truth and reconciliation.
We encourage our community to reflect upon our role as settlers on Indigenous lands and learn more about our shared history. We also encourage our community to publicly show their support for Indigenous peoples in Canada by wearing orange shirts on September 30th to honour the lives of those impacted by the residential school system. We’ve created shirts that have been designed by Secwépemc artist Kel-c and the proceeds will be donated to the Indian Residential School Survivors Society.
“The reward of an evil deed is its equivalent. But whoever pardons and seeks reconciliation, then their reward is with God. He certainly does not like the wrongdoers.”
→ Read the Truth and Reconciliation Commissions’ Report and Calls to Action: https://nctr.ca/records/reports/
→ Learn more about the significance of Orange Shirt Day at: https://www.orangeshirtday.org/about-us
→ Make a donation to the Indian Residential School Survivors Society: https://www.irsss.ca/
→ Purchase an orange shirt at: https://shop.islamicreliefcanada.org/collections/orange-shirt-day-collection