Truth and Reconciliation Week

Faculty of Social Sciences
School of Social Work
National Day for Truth and Reconciliation
Indigenous rights
Orange shirt on a white fence
In the spirit of reparation, listening and reciprocity, the Kinistòtàdimin Circle (KC) and the School of Social Work (SSW) of the University of Ottawa (UO) - located on the traditional and unceded territory of the Omàmiwinini Algonquin Nation - have been committed since 2018 to the implementation of initiatives promoting the decolonization of the social work profession.

From September 25 to 30, 2023, the KC and the SSW encourage professors, students, educators and administrative staff to recognize the traumatic history experienced by more than seven generations of Indigenous families in Canada's residential schools (1831 to 1996). To this day, the weight of this history continues to have an intergenerational impact on the daily experiences of many families living with the lingering aftermath of colonial policies.

According to Marie Wilson, Commissioner of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC, 2015) and wife of a residential school survivor, healing must first and foremost involve transforming judgments into compassion. Education is a lever for achieving this goal, and a key to opening the door to dialogue and awareness of the tragedies of the past.

This week of commemoration offers a series of initiatives to honour the memory of survivors, to highlight their strength of character and resurgence in the face of adversity, and to ensure that these atrocities never happen again. The week also invites all those who reside in Canada not only to reflect on the history of residential schools, but to take action, including educating themselves, committing to engaging with the TRC’s 94 Calls to Action, and joining with Indigenous communities and organizations to resist the effects and impacts of colonialism that persist to this day.

Below, the SSW and KC have provided a list of resources and events that will be taking place in and around the Ottawa-Gatineau region. We encourage everyone to join us in participating.


From September 13th to December 12th - 7 session microlearning program: "Wholistic Social Work: Engaging Indigenous clients."

From Monday, September 25th to Saturday, September 30th - National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation

Wednesday, September 27th, from noon to 1 p.m. - Workshop (in French only): "De bottines à mocassins - Le chemin de la vérité pour une réconciliation active", with Gilbert W. Whiteduck, offered by the Ontario Association of Social Workers (OASW). Registration required.

Wednesday, September 27th, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. - Inauguration of the Faculty of Social Sciences Indigenous garden

Friday, September 29th, at 9:30 a.m. - Indigenous Resource Centre at University of Ottawa - Mashkawaziwogamig

Friday, September 29th, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. - Otinichick: Taken.

Saturday, September 30th, 1 p.m. - Gathering at the Parliament. Wear orange!

Orange shirt day significance