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“The Children” Residential Schools Monument
Cranbrook, British Columbia

“In October 2017, a memorial statue of two children was built on the grounds of St. Eugene Resort and Casino in British Columbia. The casino was once a residential school called St. Eugene Mission School. The monument, called “The Children” was erected to remember the building’s history and those who attended residential schools.”

Syilx/Okanagan Indian Residential Schools Monument
Penticton, British Columbia

“On November 28, 2017, the Okanagan Nation Alliance (ONA) unveiled the Syilx/Okanagan Indian Residential School Monument. The Monument houses a series of five educational panels and a sculptural work, and is open to visit for all people interested in educating themselves about the Indian Residential School experience.” This is the primary ONA monument, but they have also launched the Community Commemorative Monuments Project, in which several members of the ONA construct and erect their own monuments. These will be discussed below.

“Never Again” Community Commemorative Monument
Penticton, British Columbia

The Penticton Indian Band (PIB), a member of the Okanagan Nation Alliance (ONA), created their own monument to honour residential school victims and survivors. “This monument is located at the Health Centre. The concept encompasses precise interpretation with everything having a meaning. Designed by Clint George, called “Never Again,” where it is declared, open and proudly, that they will never let their children be taken again!”

Community Commemorative Monument
West Kelowna, British Columbia

The Westbank First Nation (WFN), a member of the Okanagan Nation Alliance (ONA), erected a monument of their own. “The monument is located at their Elders building and was designed by Smoker Marchand. WFN hosted their Indian residential monument ceremony on April 25th, 2013 where 20 members participated. The monument bares seven generations to honour Indian residential school survivors, their families and those who have passed on.”

Community Commemorative Monument
Douglas Lake, British Columbia

One member of the Okanagan Nation Alliance (ONA), the Upper Nicola Band (UNB), did not create a sculptural work. Instead, “[t]hey have designed and constructed their monument to look like an Arbor. It is intended to be used as a place for gathering outdoors, with seating and an outdoor BBQ. It is a place for healing and feasting together as a community for all the generations.”

Community Commemorative Monument
Lower Similkameen Indian Band (LSIB), British Columbia

One member of the Okanagan Nation Alliance (ONA), the Lower Similkameen Indian Band (LSIB), constructed a similar monument to the Upper Nicola Band (UNB); “[i]ntended to keep the focus on culture and healing the monument at LSIB doesn’t reflect anything about Indian residential school experiences. The healing areas are splashed across different locations at LSIB’s grounds. Firstly, at the entrance you can see statues of women harvesting traditional food surrounded by landscaping from traditional plants such as siya bushes. The second area contains an elaborate rock wall feature that surrounds a belvedere with benches for a rest area and a propane fire pit in the centre. These spaces represent peace, tranquility and culture.”

Community Commemorative Monument
Osoyoos Indian Band (OIB), British Columbia

Another member of the Okanagan Nation Alliance (ONA), the Osoyoos Indian Band (OIB), again constructed a meeting place which includes artistic and symbolic elements; “OIB’s concept was also to have an outdoor multi-functional space so their people can gather in positive ways. The roof is of a hat embellished with feathers, which go back into early tradition to represent the hereditariness of their people and culture. This monument includes an outdoor built-in barbeque, with capabilities to host meals. A plaque of the names of all OIB’s former students will be mounted, as soon as they have collected all the names.”

Sacred Heart Mission School Monument
Fort Providence, Northwest Territories

This “monument was erected on the site of the former Sacred Heart Mission School to honour the students who died at the residential school.” It is located near the site of a mass grave, which is said to be the final resting place of around 300 of the school’s students. The names of these children are inscribed on the monument.

Residential Schools Monument
Winnipeg, Manitoba

An engraved stone monument was erected in the Peace Garden outside the Canadian Museum for Human Rights in May 2014. “The monument itself was a gift from David Bohn of Larsen Memorials and a member of St. Paul’s Anglican Church…The monument is located at The Forks, a historic site at the confluence of the Red and Assiniboine rivers where First Nations people gathered for centuries and then met with European fur traders, and where Winnipeg first began as a settlement.”

Residential Schools Memorial Totem
Whitehorse, Yukon

“In November 2012, an 11-metre memorial totem pole was erected in downtown Whitehorse. Each wood chip from the totem’s carving represents a life affected by residential school. The memorial was built with a $50,000 grant from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.”