- Category: news
- Created: Friday, 01 November 2013 14:20
- Published: Friday, 01 November 2013 14:20
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Nanaimo Daily News
A healing legacy walk for residential school survivors happens today at Maffeo-Sutton Park.The walk was organized by Inter-Tribal Health Authority's First Nations House of Healing programs as a way to honour residential school survivors as federal funding winds down.
The First Nations House of Healing has been doing work to help people who have been affected by physical and/or sexual abuse in residential schools - either directly or indirectly - in Nanaimo for about 13 years.Emmy Manson, Snuneymuxw councillor and manager of wellness and mental health at the First Nations House of Healing, said she hopes non-aboriginal people and organizations will come out to support survivors.
"We wanted to bring something together in the spirit of healing," she said."It has been a really successful program and we've been trying to return to our culture.
"The walk will begin at 1 p.m. at the gazebo in Maffeo-Sutton Park and will continue up Comox Street, to Front Street and down to the Swyalana Lagoon.
There will be refreshments and guest speakers back at the gazebo afterwards.Snuneymuxw Coun. Bill Yoachim will serve as MC and residential school survivors will tell their stories.Manson said ribbons have also been made representing the program's "from surviving to thriving" model that will be presented to survivors at the event.
"Some of the people that have gone through this, they go through life just surviving," she said."We hope they get to the point where they're thriving as well.
"Manson said she was inspired by the walk for reconciliation in Vancouver in September that brought out thousands of people.
As of Thursday, about 100 people had already confirmed attendance for the walk in Nanaimo.
A similar walk was recently held in Nanaimo to coincide with reconciliation week, but Manson said she hopes to see a higher turnout and more non-Indigenous supporters this time.
For further information about the First Nations House of Healing or the healing legacy walk, the Inter-Tribal Health office can be contacted at 250-753-3990.