Ottawa releases $35 million to support survivors during papal visit | Native Residential Schools


Ottawa releases $35 million to support survivors during papal visit | Residential schools for aboriginals

Pope Francis will visit Edmonton, Quebec and Iqaluit.

The federal government announces that it has provided more than $35 million to support Indigenous communities and residential school survivors during the papal visit to the country.

Pope Francis is scheduled to travel to Alberta, Quebec and Nunavut between July 24 and 29. This papal tour includes public and private events with special emphasis on the participation of indigenous communities.

This trip is prompted by the Pope's desire to offer a formal apology on behalf of the Roman Catholic Church for its role in the residential school system for residential schools operated in Canada. Earlier this year, the Pope offered his first apology to a delegation of Indigenous representatives who visited the Vatican.

Indigenous Services Canada and Crown-Indigenous Relations helped jointly for $30.5 million dedicated to community activities, ceremonies or transportation of survivors to take part in these events related to the Pope's visit.

Pope Francis, during an audience with representatives of indigenous peoples at the Vatican on April 1, 2022.

Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, Marc Miller, had previously announced that Ottawa would support survivors who want to attend the papal tour events and that planning had already begun in order to avoid a logistical nightmare.

< p class="e-p">In addition to the sums described above, an amount of three million dollars will be donated to Aboriginal organizations in the three regions of the country where Pope Francis is expected.

The tour is scheduled to begin in Edmonton , then the pope will head to the community of Maskwacis, to the south, to meet survivors of the Ermineskin boarding school. Other activities are planned in Alberta, including a huge mass celebrated in Commonwealth Stadium.

Subsequently, the pope is expected in Quebec. Another large-scale mass is planned at the Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupré basilica. The tour is set to conclude in Iqaluit, where the Pope will once again meet residential school survivors and participate in community activities.

The federal government has also pledged to $2 million to fund the services of Indigenous language interpreters at events involving the Pope.

An estimated 150,000 Indigenous children were forced to attend residential schools over a period of a century. The Roman Catholic Church was responsible for operating approximately 60% of the facilities.

The Indian Residential Schools Resolution Health Support Program provides a Crisis line dedicated to survivors. If you feel the need, you can communicate day or night with stakeholders by dialing 1-866-925-4419.


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