ALAMEDA - More than 40 people gathered outside the Alameda United Church on Sept. 30 to begin a walk to recognize the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.
Third generation residential school survivor Tammy Ignatiuk of Carnduff led with a Cree Healing Prayer and smudging ceremony to bless the walk. She was proud to be joined by her husband, Sgt. Warner Ignatiuk of the Carnduff RCMP, and their two children, Halyna and Danylo Ignatiuk.
Halyna assisted her mother with the Cree prayer, reciting the words in English.
The participants, who ranged from three to 78 years of age, then left the church grounds with signs and banners to honor those affected by residential schools and colonization in Canada. They walked approximately seven kilometres from Alameda to the junction of Highways 9 and 18, and back to the church grounds.
Local firefighters and RCMP members from Carnduff followed along to provide their support. Traffic slowed, stopped, and honked their horns in encouragement and acknowledgment.
A to-go meal following the event raised more than $300, with the funds going to the United Church of Canada’s Healing Fund which “supports healing initiatives for survivors of the residential school system and its ongoing intergenerational impacts.”
Thank you to all who participated in the walk. The Alameda United Church says it will continue to find ways to support Truth and Reconciliation.
This story has been updated to correct the name of Sgt. Warner Ignatiuk.