What is Orange Shirt Day?
Orange Shirt Day is a day of remembrance dedicated to acts of reconciliation. It is celebrated annually across Canada on September 30; organizations can select a date close to this to host local events.
Orange Shirt Day commemorates the history and legacy of residential schools. It grew out of a gathering of survivors held in Williams Lake, British Columbia in 2013, where Phyllis Webstad, who attended St. Joseph Mission residential school, shared her experience of having her new orange shirt taken on her first day. September 30 was picked as the date because it is the time children had to leave their homes and return to the schools.
A short 3 minute video on the Williams Lake event and Phyllis’ story can be found here.
More information and excellent videos can be found at Safe and Caring Schools Orange Shirt Day website.
Goals of Orange Shirt Day
Truth, then reconciliation
- Develop an awareness of our shared history
- Acknowledge the legacy of residential schools
- Take action in the spirit of reconciliation and building positive relations