Orange Shirt Day - #EveryChildMatters

Orange Shirt Day - #EveryChildMatters

On September 28th, Burnett staff and students recognized the annual Orange Shirt Day and opened the door to global conversation on all aspects of Residential Schools. Staff and students displayed their support by wearing their orange shirts, pinned orange hearts to their shirts, and by completing classroom discussions and activities.  It was 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 is a legacy of the St. Joseph Mission (SJM) residential school commemoration event held in Williams Lake, BC, Canada, in the spring of 2013.  It grew out of Phyllis Webstad’s account of having her shiny new orange shirt taken away on her first day of school at the Mission School and it has become an opportunity to keep the discussion on all aspects of residential schools happening annually.  The date was chosen because it is the time of year in which children were taken from their homes to residential schools, and because it is an opportunity to set the stage for anti-racism and anti-bullying policies for the coming school year.  Orange Shirt Day is also an opportunity for First Nations, local governments, schools and communities to come together in the spirit of reconciliation and hope for generations of children to come.