Community Arts Council of Vancouver (CACV) has been selected by Vancity as a new Community Partner in support of our Reframing Relations program. Reframing Relations brings pairs of Indigenous and non-Indigenous artist-facilitators into schools and other community settings to advance the possibility of Reconciliation through creative action. We particularly recognize that we live work and play on the unceded traditional and ancestral territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and sel̓íl̓witulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations.
CACV’s Executive Director Eric Rhys Miller and Program Manager Johnny Trinh were honored to launch this partnership at our local Chinatown branch of Vancity. Branch manager Grace Wong introduced us and invited us back to hold a workshop for the staff.
Launched in 2017, the program has so far reached over 1,000 students and adults in 18 different schools and community centres. Teachers and staff speak to the impact of this work on students who may not have prior experience thinking about or expressing their views on Canada’s difficult history of colonization, all the pain and the possibility embedded in a meaningful encounter with these many truths. This work is inspired by the tenets of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and aligns with British Columbia’s new curriculum, the importance of including Indigenous perspectives.
One testament to the success of this program to date is that most of the schools and community centres we have worked with for initial workshops are coming back to request longer residencies and additional workshops for even more of their students, staff, and community members. We see a growing demand and an awareness of the importance of this work, and are honoured to play our role in the wider social movement of remembering, understanding, healing, and moving forward into a shared future as Canadians living on Indigenous land.