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Urban Commitments to Reconciliation

City of Humboldt committed to reconciliation all-year round

July 6, 2023

NationTalk: NortheastNow – Just because June (National Indigenous History Month) is over, doesn’t mean the City of Humboldt isn’t focused on reconciliation.

Back in January, the city and Heritage Saskatchewan, along with their partners, the Office of the Treaty Commissioner and the Aboriginal Friendship Centres of Saskatchewan, launched a pilot project in Humboldt titled “Relationship Building and Reconciliation through Living Heritage” with funding from the Community Initiatives Fund.

The year-long project is grounded in the local context of the Humboldt region through the museum’s re-design of exhibit storylines.

According to the city’s website, the project was inspired by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) of Canada’s Calls to Action and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP).

The four-part cyclical process is also the result of conversations and feedback from communities who need help implementing calls from the TRC and UNDRIP in meaningful ways.

This means that the city has and will continue to host events, among other things, throughout 2023.

One of those included a city-wide survey which asked residents their thoughts on different topics surrounding reconciliation.

Over 100 people responded to the survey, and the results were largely positive about reconciliation, with over 75 per cent of respondents ranking reconciliation as ‘highly important.’

When asked about the possibility of reconciliation, around 50 per cent of people said they believed reconciliation was possible in Saskatchewan.

The people who responded to the survey also valued events as ways to learn about Indigenous world views.

And, so far, 79 per cent of those who have attended an event about Indigenous culture and living heritage found that it increased their cultural understanding.

“We thank everyone who responded to the survey and are pleased so many folks took the time to share their thoughts with us” Kristin Catherwood, director of living heritage at Heritage Saskatchewan, said. “In this pilot we are creating opportunities and space for people to come together, learn, and ask questions.”

Other events so far this year, recently included teepee teachings, while Horizon School Division hosted an Indigenous flag raising.

A Flintknapping workshop was also held, while other events that have and will happen, as well as more information about the project, can be viewed at the city’s website under museum and reconciliation.

by Ben Tompkins

On Twitter @BenTompkins_8