June 16, 2015
Calgary Aboriginal Urban Affairs Committee (CAUAC), in partnership with The City of Calgary, hosted a special event to celebrate the commitment of all thosed dedicated to create a positive relationship between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal citizens.
The evening included performances by various aboriginal artists including Strathmore High school’s drama class performing “New Blood”, the story of Chief Vincent Yellow Old Woman’s journey through the Residential School system.
Mayor Naheed Nenshi spoke to those gathered about The City of Calgary’s commitment to strengthening these relationships and honouring Aboriginal culture as part of Calgary’s heritage.
“In this time of reconciliation, it is important we contemplate and learn from our shared history in this place that has been home to people for many thousands of years,” said Mayor Nenshi. “Together, right now, we can make sure all Calgarians, especially our Aboriginal community, have the opportunity to lead a great Canadian life.”
Evelyn Good Striker is the chair of CAUAC. CAUAC acts as an advisory committee to Calgary City Council and serves as a catalyst, a liaison, advisory group and support body between The City of Calgary and Aboriginal people living in Calgary.
“This Reconciliation Event is about acknowledging the impact of colonialism on Aboriginal people through residential schools in our local area, Calgary and surrounding Treaty 7 communities,” said Evelyn Good Striker, CAUAC chair. “We had seven schools in the Treaty 7 area. The Prime Minister has made reference to this as ‘Canada’s dark history’ at his national apology to residential school survivors. Our event is about presenting that history and seeking ways in which we can all move forward from this shared history.”
According to Good Striker, we need to continue to build on the Mayor’s Reconciliation Proclamation, issued last year, where Aboriginal people are seen as meaningful contributors to Calgary, and that they get to equally enjoy a quality of life that is afforded to all Calgarians where our collective spirit generates enough for all.
For more information on CAUAC, and Aboriginal-specific initiatives, visit here on Calgary.ca.