Calgary Public Library is proud to offer a variety of free Indigenous programs and events throughout the month of June to recognize National Indigenous History Month and National Indigenous Peoples Day (June 21).
“Calgary Public Library is honoured to work with Indigenous artists, educators, and employees year-round, and in June we get to shine a special light on their work to celebrate Indigenous history and culture during National Indigenous History Month,” says Kelli Morning Bull, Indigenous Services Design Lead, Calgary Public Library. “Our staff have worked hard to ensure Indigenous community members can see themselves and their culture in Library programming. This month will include opportunities for all community members to learn about the histories and cultures of the original inhabitants of Moh’kinsstis, the land we now call Calgary.”
Programming for the month includes activities for all ages and kicks off on Saturday, June 4 at Central Memorial Park for a special event, including an opening blessing by an Elder, Grand Entry with dancers, dignitaries, and flag bearers, and a mini powwow. Stew and bannock will be served as well.
Program highlights include:
- Opening ceremonies outside of Memorial Park Library include a mini powwow on June 4, 1:00 – 4:00 pm
- A panel discussion in partnership with the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame about the role of sport on the path to Reconciliation on June 21, 5:30 pm
- Indigenous Family Storytimes at various Library locations
- Book displays throughout the month at various locations and Indigenous authors and titles featured in regular Library programming
- Screening of The Stardale Film Trilogy: The Road, Shadows of Time, and A Light in the Shadow, in partnership with the Stardale Women’s Group on June 24
“All public libraries have a responsibility to respond to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action, which includes sharing the true history of the injustices and racism experienced by Indigenous people, including the intergenerational trauma caused by the residential school system,” says Sarah Meilleur, CEO, Calgary Public Library. “Honouring Indigenous community members also includes providing respectful and meaningful opportunities to celebrate and share their stories and culture. I hope all Calgarians will join me in learning more about the history, traditions, and culture of Treaty 7 this June.”
Indigenous programming is a year-round priority as part of the Library’s commitment to fostering truth and reconciliation with local Indigenous communities. Other ongoing Indigenous initiatives and resources at the Library include: eResources where members can explore the history of Indigenous peoples in Canada; booklists highlighting Indigenous authors; Napi’s World educational program in schools; the Elders’ Guidance Circle program; educational YouTube videos that share Indigenous languages and land acknowledgements, and more. These cross-cultural learning opportunities and other Indigenous programming at the Library is generously supported by the Suncor Energy Foundation
Find more detailed event listings at calgarylibrary.ca/IndigenousMonth. All registered programs can be accessed with a Calgary Public Library card, which is free to all residents of Calgary and surrounding area Indigenous communities. Sign up today at calgarylibrary.ca.