As we mourn the 215 children, as we wear orange, as we add an Every Child Matters banner to our Facebook page many of us are asking, how do I learn more? how do I understand? how do I help make a real difference? Rotarians in our area have started down this path. Our District Governor wrote. “This …will be a journey though some darks places on the way to enlightenment and unity.” 
 
Our District has joined HIP – Honouring Indigenous People, a Canada wide group of Rotarians and non-Rotarians, Indigenous and non-Indigenous who’s mission is to catalyze societal change by inspiring Indigenous & Non-Indigenous relationship building, strengthening community well-being and advancing the next generation of leaders. 
 
You don’t need to be a Rotarian or Indigenous to be a part of this. Click here to check out their website, sign up for their newsletter and to follow them on Facebook 
 
To read District Governor David Elliott's email to all area Rotarians and to watch last week's presentation on Honouring Indigenous People Click on  Read More
 
 
 
Last week the world learned that 215 bodies of Indigenous children were found in an unmarked mass grave on the property of the former Kamloops Residential School. This is a horrific reminder of a time in Canada's history that saw children torn from their families and placed in the residential school system. There are thousands of children still unaccounted for from this time. While we may be tempted to say this is in the past, over 7 generations of Indigenous people continue to feel indescribable effects of personal and intergenerational trauma to this day. This is not just a historical issue; it is a current issue.

Speaking as a descendant of settlers, we need to sit with the discomfort of our country's actions, that though we might not be directly responsible, we still greatly benefit from colonization in Canada. The discovery of the bodies of lost souls underscores the need for us to begin the work of understanding and reconciliation.
 
Our May Noon Zoom featuring John Currie ED of HIP- Honouring Indigenous People, and Clay Melnike District 6330 HIP Co-ordinator was a first step in what will be a journey through some dark places on the way to enlightenment and unity.
 
Here is the link in case you missed it; https://youtu.be/T5EqxoiqxNQ
 
To honour the lives and spirits of those 215 children, I encourage you to wear orange this week.

If you are able to, please take a moment to pause @ 2:15pm and remember the children that never returned to their families and communities.
 
Yours in Rotary,
 
 
David Elliott
 
District Governor 2020-21