Orange Shirt Day and

The National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, Sept 30

Reconciliation Saskatoon is encouraging everyone to take steps to recognize the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation on Sept 30, and use this moment to deepen your commitment to fostering change.

The federal statutory holiday was passed this year by the Government of Canada to recognize and commemorate the tragic history and ongoing legacy of residential schools, and to honour their survivors, their families and communities. The day was established in response to the 80th call to action in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action.

The move came shortly after the remains of children were discovered in late May by the Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc First Nation, on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School. More remains have been found since then, and more searches are underway across the country. The original report estimated that 6,000 children died while attending the schools, although many people expect the number to be much higher.

Also known as Orange Shirt Day, wearing orange on September 30 continues to be a way to honour Residential School Survivors. Orange Shirt Day was inspired by the story of Phyllis (Jack) Webstad, who had a beautiful orange shirt, bought by her grandmother, that was taken from her as a six-year old on her first day at residential school.

Do more than just wear orange. Take time to learn about the residential school impact and legacy, have a conversation about colonization, make a commitment and find someone to be accountable with, and use the day to meaningfully engage in reconciliation.


Usually we host the Rock Your Roots Walk for Reconciliation on National Indigenous Peoples Day (June 21). In 2022, the event was cancelled due to weather. So we are excited to bring this event to our community on Sept 30. Here’s what you can expect:

  • 8am Pancake Breakfast hosted by CUMFI in front of their office (315 Avenue M). Free!
  • 10am Rock Your Roots Walk for Reconciliation
    From CUMFI to the “Where Our Paths Cross” art installation at Reconciliation Circle in Victoria Park
    The Walk for Reconciliation will go down 20th Street West, turn right onto Avenue H, and left onto 17th Street West heading to the “Where Our Paths Cross” statue. Golf cart rides will be available for anyone with accessibility issues.
  • 10:45am Program including artist performances and remarks
    When we arrive at Reconciliation Circle, we’ll have a short program. Following the program, we will transport participants back to CUMFI by bus.

Aligning with The Orange Banner Project, by the City of Saskatoon and Saskatoon Tribal Council on Sept 30
The City of Saskatoon and Saskatoon Tribal Council are launching an Orange Banner Project in September, hanging orange banners from lamp posts throughout the City for a few weeks before and after Sept 30. The banners will be hung from Ave P and 20th Street W, run downtown and continue on the east side of the city down College Drive adjacent to the U of S campus. Runners from Running Wild Athletics will begin a run at the east point of where the banners begin. The runners will meet the Rock Your Roots walkers at “Where Our Paths Cross.”

We’re very excited about these partnerships. The Rock Your Roots walk will take place along the route of the orange banners, so our participants can take in this installation on the journey!

Rock Your Roots and the Orange Banner Project folks are working together with Discover Saskatoon (formerly Tourism Saskatoon) on a comprehensive awareness campaign that will invite people to attend, but also to use this event as a way to deepen engagement in Truth and Reconciliation.



  • Attend the Rock Your Roots Walk for Reconciliation starting at CUMFI (315 Ave M South). See details and info here.
  • Wear orange shirts and organize a walk for your staff, family, community. During the walk, reflect/discuss what actions you’ve taken to advance truth and reconciliation in your home, workplace, and community. How do you want to start and/or deepen your journey this year?
  • Decide what actions you’ll commit to this year to advance your journey of truth and reconciliation. Use the Personal Commitment to Truth and Reconciliation worksheet below to help you. Ask friends or family to join you and have accountability partners to check in with to review your progress.
  • Close your workplace on Sept 30 to give staff an opportunity to reflect, learn, attend community events, and honour Residential School Survivors in their own way.
  • If your workplace is open, commit Sept 30 to be a day of reflection and learning, Indigenous Awareness Training and/or Antiracism Training.
  • Create an art installation that recognizes Residential School Survivors, those who didn’t survive and the families impacted. What can you do? Tie ribbons to a tree, create a window installation or find another way to visually represent the lives impacted through the residential school system and/or the number of unmarked graves. Make sure your installation is authentic, by using it as an exercise to raise awareness and deepen your own education. Inspire others to take action.
  • Attend a community event for truth and reconciliation. Check out the Office of the Treaty Commissioner’s events calendar.
  • Visit Wanuskewin for a rich learning experience on Sept 30. See event details here.
  • Support Indigenous-lead events and Indigenous artists.
  • Visit monuments or public art installations in your city that are significant to Indigenous history, culture, truth and reconciliation. Learn why they are important and study the background and history. The Know Your Roots map project helps identify locations in Saskatoon to get you started.



ConnectR was created to give you the ideas and resources you need to learn about truth and reconciliation, work against racism, understand the impacts of colonization, foster healing and relationship-building, and ultimately engage in making change.

To honour the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation, we created the following tools to inspire action and help you along this path.

Personal Commitment to Truth and Reconciliation

  • We created this worksheet to help you reflect on your journey of truth and reconciliation, and create a plan for the year ahead. Decide what you’re going to do to foster change in your community.

Pathways for Moving Forward

  • The Pathways for Moving Forward introduces you to a Vision for Reconciliation and suggests calls to action that will help us realize that vision.