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How to be an Ally: The Legacy of Residential Schools & Journey Together

March 22, 2017 @ 6:00 pm - 8:30 pm


150 Years of Loss. For over a century, beginning in the mid-1800s and continuing into the mid-1990s, Aboriginal children in Canada were taken from their homes and communities and placed in institutions called residential schools. These schools were run by religious orders in collaboration with the federal government and were attended by children as young as four or five years of age. Separated from their families and prohibited from speaking their native languages and practicing their culture, the vast majority of the over 150,000 children that attended these schools experienced neglect and suffering. The impacts of sexual, mental, and physical abuse, shame, and deprivation endured at Indian Residential Schools (IRS) continue to affect generations of Survivors, their families, and communities today. Remarkably, in the face of this tremendous adversity, many Survivors and their descendants have retained their language and their culture and continue to work toward healing and reconciliation.

Join us for an emotionally powerful evening with two Residential School Survivors for a Question & Answer Period.

Speaker: Bear Standing Tall

For the past 18 years, Bear Standing Tall has facilitated Indigenous Cultural Sensitivity Training workshops across Canada – at Universities, Colleges, Schools, Health Facilities, Wellness Centres, Alcohol and Drug Treatment Centres, Healing Lodges, Youth Centres, Men’s and Women’s Support Houses and Federal Institutions for Men & Women.

My name is Bear Standing Tall. I am an Indigenous Nehiyaw (Cree) from Onion Lake Cree Nation, Saskatchewan and the founder of Bear Standing Tall and Associates (BSTA).

Our mission is to create a bridge between Indigenous and Non-Indigenous nations. Bear Standing Tall offers Indigenous Cultural Sensitivity Training (ICST) for educators, social workers, public servants, health workers, counsellors, and everyone wanting to expand their knowledge about Indigenous People’s, History, Traditions, Philosophy and basic awareness of Spiritualty.

We are offering you the opportunity to expand your skills and awareness by participating in BSTA’s experiential and wholistic approach to education and training. Through ICST, you gain authentic Indigenous wisdom and knowledge to build new, effective and practical methods of engagement.

Learn more at



What is “How to be an Ally”?

As more and more of us confront the fact that the world is not equitable for all, it is crucial for us to understand what our role is in supporting one another and together, figure out the systems and society that work for everybody.

One step that we’re taking at the Centre for Social Innovation is partnering with incredible equity trainers to draw on their lived experiences and professional practice building bridges between communities to share their thoughts on how someone could be their ally. This is followed by a facilitated Q&A discussion in smaller groups.


About the cost and accessibility

The cost was a hard piece for us because we want this to be accessible to everybody, but we also wanted to honour the time of our facilitators and attach fair value to their work and ours.The cost of tickets is still reflecting a discount from both parties, but we’re comfortable with this if it means more people can attend.

If you find the cost prohibitive, we are offering 5 bursaries for each session on a first come, first serve basis. You do not need to a provide an explanation and we trust that these bursaries will go to people who really require them. For anyone requiring bursary or other accommodation (i.e. tokens, child minding), please email Shilbee ( We’re constantly learning and exploring different ways to live up to our value of creating healthy cultures and we’re always open to feedback!


Check out future workshops here:


March 22, 2017
6:00 pm - 8:30 pm


CSI Regent Park
585 Dundas St East - 3rd Floor
Toronto, ON M5A 2B7 Canada
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