Friday, April 07, 2017

Reconciliation Totem Pole Erected at UBC

The University of British Columbia is now home to a Reconciliation Totem Pole. Haida mastercarver and hereditary Chief James Hart, also known as 7idansuu carved the 17-metre tall totem pole that represents the victims and survivors of Canada's residential school system.  Hundreds of residential school survivors shared stories at the emotional ceremony at the University of British Columbia.

Thousands of copper nails were driven into the pole by survivors of the
residential school system and their families to honour some of the 6,000 children
who died at the church-run facilities.

The pole, carved into a 800-year-old cedar tree, has special figures representing different aspects of the residential school experience.

The depiction of a residential school carved into the "reconciliation pole" was
modeled after the Coqualeetza school in Sardis, B.C. Photo Mike Howell

The top of the "reconciliation pole" features an eagle about to take flight,
a symbol of hope for the future of the country's Aboriginal peoples.
Photo Mike Howell

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