May we never forget. May we learn. May we do better.
As more unmarked graves are found at former Indian Residential School sites across Canada, Indigenous people and communities continue to face renewed trauma. The reminders that accompany a dark chapter in Canada’s history will require much healing, understanding and a process of looking inside and self-reflection to help support one another in the coming days. As Chief Cadmus Delorme from Cowessess First Nation recently stated: “Every day is about healing for the survivors and friends of survivors that went to these schools”.
Prairie Mountain Health acknowledges that for a time in history there were five Indian Residential Schools in the geographical mapping of this health region. If one can imagine the significance of that one fact, we can begin to understand how these tragic events are affecting Indigenous people that we know and work with. The region extends deepest sympathies and sorrow during these difficult times.
Prairie Mountain Health encourages all who deliver health services on the original lands of First Nations people, and on the homeland of Métis citizens to recognize the ongoing obligation to deliver culturally safe – sensitive – compassionate care. As an organization, let us embrace the distinct cultural knowledge, practices and traditions of Indigenous Peoples and continued efforts to strengthen relationships with the Indigenous communities and peoples who we serve.
National and Regional Support Services
The National Indian Residential School Crisis Line provides support for former students and others affected.
Crisis referral services can be accessed by calling the 24-hour national crisis line: 1-866-925-4419
Hope for Wellness, set up in 2018 by the federal government, offers immediate mental health counselling and crisis intervention to Indigenous people across Canada.
Online chat is available in English and French by visiting their website: https://www.hopeforwellness.ca
Or by phone in English, French, Cree, Ojibway, and Inuktitut at: 1-855-242-3310
Talk 4 Healing line at 1-855-554-HEAL, or text WELLNESS to 741741 at any time.
Indian Residential Schools Resolution Health Support Program Phone toll free: 1-866-818-3505