Stories of Sixties Scoop survivors in Canada are being highlighted in a travelling exhibit set to come to Victoria on June 15.
A series of panels explaining the history of the Sixties Scoop and focusing on a dozen individuals who have shared their stories will be at the Greater Victoria Public Library’s central branch on Broughton Street from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. for the one-day event. A team of five people will be on hand with the exhibit.
Called Bi-Giwen: Coming Home — Truth Telling From the Sixties Scoop, the federally funded exhibit is presented by the Sixties Scoop Indigenous Society of Alberta, and “describes the powerful and emotional stories and devastating impacts of Sixties Scoop in Canada,” said Sandra Relling, president of the Alberta society and a survivor.
It includes a dozen personal testimonials.
A quiet area will be set aside in case anyone viewing the exhibit wants to speak privately to a team member.
The Sixties Scoop refers to government practices between the 1950s and 1980s, when an unknown number of First Nations, Métis and Inuit children were taken by child services from parents, families and communities and placed in non-Indigenous families.
Many experienced abuse, mistreatment and neglect and lost touch with their families, communities, culture and traditional language, a society statement said.
The exhibit was in Prince George on Wednesday and will be in Kamloops on Saturday. It has already been to Cranbook and Kelowna. Three days have been allocated for the exhibit in Vancouver.
Victoria is the only Vancouver Island stop.
“We just wanted to cover as broad of an area as we could to reach as many people as we could with respect to coming in to view the exhibit and learning more about the Sixties Scoop,” Relling said from Prince George.
Like residential schools, the exhibit shows the impacts of assimilation policies in Canada, she said.
“What we hope to do by this is create more awareness about this part of history in Canada and the ongoing impacts to Indigenous people.”
The exhibit has already toured Alberta and Saskatchewan, she said, and could return to Victoria in future if funding permits.
For more information go to www.ssisa.ca