There has been an outpouring of support for our community. Thank you for helping us bring to light such hard truths that came from the preliminary findings regarding the unmarked burial sites of Kamloops Indian Residential School students so that we may begin the process of honouring the lost loved ones who are in our caretaking.
Many have asked how they can support Tk̓emlúps te Secwépemc. Here are some suggestions.
- Please be respectful of Tk̓emlúps te Secwépemc cultural protocols and primary lead as the caretaker of these lost loved ones. We are doing so with love, honour, and respect. We have and will continue to reach out to communities and Nations whose members attended the Kamloops Indian Residential School to determine the next steps.
- Help ensure that there is not a tragedy upon a tragedy and uphold all Provincial Health and Safety orders. So many people throughout the province have been traumatized and are grieving because of this news and wanting to come together in ceremony and prayer. Please remember that we are still in the midst of a pandemic and Tk̓emlúps te Secwépemc members have not had their second Covid-19 vaccination.
- Follow Protocols for Ceremony and Gatherings. For individuals or groups that want to hold gathering /ceremonies in the TteS community, it is appropriate protocol to have permission and approval of the TteS Chief and Council. It also assists the community in planning and preparation.
- Not clear or aware of the real history of residential school? Review the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) Final Report and Calls to Action. In doing so, you are upholding the heavy lifting already done by the survivors, intergenerational survivors, and the TRC. In addition, to show your solidarity, we encourage you to wear an orange shirt and start conversations with your neighbours about why you are doing so.
- For non-Indigenous people, now is not the time to ask questions but to simply offer a kind ear to your Indigenous friends. This situation has opened a wound for so many. Please also take the time to learn about intergenerational trauma and its effects.
- Would you and your family like to visit? There is a memorial in front of the Kamloops Indian Residential School where you can leave notes, flowers or just to come to pay your respects in a COVID safe way.
- Many have asked if there was a way to make a financial contribution to support Tk̓emlúps te Secwépemc in the process of honouring and learning more about the lost children in their caretaking. Donations will be used toward the work that is needed for further investigation (scientific and archival) and later memorialize the children (in collaboration with and shaped by TteS members, home communities and families of the children). Click here for information on donating.
- If you have an expertise that Tk̓emlúps te Secwépemc may be able to make use of, please contact the K.I.R.S. team with the Tk̓emlúps te Secwépemc Language and Culture Department at firstname.lastname@example.org
- If you have information about those that may be buried on this site, please contact the K.I.R.S. team with the Tk̓emlúps te Secwépemc Language and Culture Department at email@example.com
- Please follow us on Facebook or monitor our website for the latest news. Tk̓emlúps te Secwépemc will continue to provide updates on this situation as they become available.
Kukwstép-kucw (on behalf of all of us, we thank you all) for the outpouring of love, prayers for our community and all those impacted by this tragic finding.