National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

September 30th is the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. The National Day for Truth and Reconciliation is a federal statutory holiday which gives the public a chance to recognize and reflect on the intergenerational harm that residential schools have caused to Indigenous families and communities, and to honour those who have been affected by this injustice.

In honour of this solemn day, there will be no classes at Saint Mary’s University and administrative offices will be closed. 

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission - Calls to Action

The National Day for Truth and Reconciliation responds to Call to Action 80 from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action, which reads:

We call upon the federal government, in collaboration with Aboriginal peoples, to establish, as a statutory holiday, a National Day for Truth and Reconciliation to honour Survivors, their families, and communities, and ensure that public commemoration of the history and legacy of residential schools remains a vital component of the reconciliation process.

Orange Shirt Day

September 30th is also Orange Shirt Day

"The annual Orange Shirt Day on September 30th opens the door to global conversation on all aspects of Residential Schools. It is an opportunity to create meaningful discussion about the effects of Residential Schools and the legacy they have left behind.  A discussion all Canadians can tune into and create bridges with each other for reconciliation.  A day for survivors to be reaffirmed that they matter, and so do those that have been affected.  Every Child Matters, even if they are an adult, from now on."

(Orange Shirt Day website)

Orange Shirt Day invites Canadians to wear orange shirts on September 30th each year to honour survivors of residential schools, their families, and their communities. The Orange Shirt Day website has a page of resources for anyone looking to organize Orange Shirt Day at their school or work. 


All members of the Saint Mary’s community are invited to gather for a Walk in Solidarity for Reconciliation.  

Participants will meet in front of the Student Centre on campus for a Drumming Ceremony and Song with Professor Raymond Sewell, a moment of silence and a vigil. As we walk around the campus together, signs posted along the path will pose questions that encourage reflection on truth and reconciliation, and on our place in Mi'kma'ki, the ancestral and unceded territory of the Mik'maq. Participants encouraged to wear orange and orange ribbons will be provided. 

For those who cannot attend, the signage and maps will be available for 1 week following so that the reflective walk can be done in solitude or at another time. The reflective questions can be found here.

Location: The Walk will begin from Loyola 290.

Date / Time: September 29, 2021 | 3:00 P.M.

Map for Walk in Solidarity for Reconciliation (Locations of the reflective questions are noted in orange)

Truth and Reconciliation Signs with reflective questions

For more information: Email

The Mi’kmaw Native Friendship Centre is hosting several events as part of a Weekend of Reconciliation series. To learn about about these events, visit the website or Facebook page.

This group will be called together once per month as a forum for learning and to discuss a variety of topics about the Calls to Action or various reports/writings about the Calls to Action. Sign up here to receive more information in October when this initiative is launched.  

These are important opportunities to listen, learn, reflect and inspire meaningful action towards reconciliation.

The Mi'kmaw Native Friendship Centre has partnered with the National Association of Friendship Centres and Leading Edge Promo to sell shirts for Orange Shirt Day. Supplies are limited. Orders can be placed by contacting Renee at (902) 420-1576 or emailing

Donations can be made online to the Orange Shirt Society by visiting


Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action

Indspire – Truth and Reconciliation in Post-Secondary Settings: Student Experience

Walking the Talk: A Practical Guide to Reconciliation for CUPE Locals

Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion – Orange Shirt Day/National Day for Truth and Reconciliation Educational Guide

Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion – Educational Resources on Indigenous Inclusion

Share: Page Feedback