National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

September 30, 2022


National Day for Truth and Reconciliation 

September 30th, 2022

(Whitby, ON) - Today, September 30th, is National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, otherwise known as Orange Shirt Day.  Orange Shirt Day is an Indigenous-led grassroots commemorative day intended to raise awareness of the individual, family and community inter-generational impacts of residential schools, and to promote the concept of “Every Child Matters”. The orange shirt is a symbol of the stripping away of culture, freedom and self-esteem experienced by Indigenous children over generations.

National Day for Truth and Reconciliation honours the Survivors of residential schools and the children who never returned home, as well as their families and communities. Today the impact of residential schools is still felt in Indigenous communities, and commemorating this painful history is a vital component of the reconciliation process. 

We at Rugby Ontario are proud to recognize that our offices are on the traditional lands of the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation, which is covered under the Williams Treaties. We are situated on the traditional territory of the Mississaugas, a branch of the greater Anishinaabeg Nation, which includes Algonquin, Ojibway, Odawa and Pottawatomi.  

Rugby Ontario encourages our members to wear Orange today to help raise awareness of the individual, family, and community intergenerational impacts of residential schools, and to promote the concept of “Every Child Matters”. 

Rugby Ontario would also like to acknowledge the 5 Truth and Reconciliation Committee’s Calls to Action directly related to sport. 

5 of the Truth and Reconciliation Committees Calls to Action directly relate to sport:

87. We call upon all levels of government, in collaboration with Aboriginal peoples, sports halls of fame, and other relevant organizations, to provide public education that tells the national story of Aboriginal athletes in history.

88. We call upon all levels of government to take action to ensure long-term Aboriginal athlete development and growth, and continued support for the North American Indigenous Games, including funding to host the games and for provincial and territorial team preparation and travel.

89. We call upon the federal government to amend the Physical Activity and Sport Act to support reconciliation by ensuring that policies to promote physical activity as a fundamental element of health and well-being, reduce barriers to sports participation, increase the pursuit of excellence in sport, and build capacity in the Canadian sport system, are inclusive of Aboriginal peoples.

90. We call upon the federal government to ensure that national sports policies, programs, and initiatives are inclusive of Aboriginal peoples, including, but not limited to, establishing:

  • In collaboration with provincial and territorial governments, stable funding for, and access to, community sports programs that reflect the diverse cultures and traditional sporting activities of Aboriginal peoples.
  • An elite athlete development program for Aboriginal athletes.
  • Programs for coaches, trainers, and sports officials that are culturally relevant for Aboriginal peoples.
  • Anti-racism awareness and training programs.

91. We call upon the officials and host countries of international sporting events such as the Olympics, Pan Am, and Commonwealth games to ensure that Indigenous peoples' territorial protocols are respected, and local Indigenous communities are engaged in all aspects of planning and participating in such events.

Please visit the links below to support further learning about National Day for Truth and Reconciliation 

To learn what territories and treaties your club is located on, visit

For other government resources, and to explore the rich and diverse cultures, voices, experiences and stories of the First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples, visit the link HERE.

The Aboriginal Sport Circle’s Aboriginal Coaching Program provides training and curriculum for Indigenous and non-Indigenous community members to make a positive, long-lasting impact in their roles and their communities. 

The National Center for Truth and Reconciliation provides a place for learning and dialogue where the truths of the residential school experience are honoured and kept safe for future generations. 

This summer while in Nova Scotia, Rugby Canada’s Women’s 15s Team visited Sipekne’katik First Nation to deliver Rugby programming to their youth. Watch the video recapping the visit linked HERE

To support survivors of residential schools:

Legacy of Hope Foundation

Orange Shirt Society

True North Aid

First Nations Child and Family Caring Society

Reconciliation Canada


Rugby Ontario is the provincial sports governing body responsible for the organization of rugby in Ontario. Our mission is to lead, support and promote Rugby for All from communities to clubs to province. This mission signals a movement toward creating a more cohesive, supportive and progressive sporting environment that is responsive to the needs of all members.

To learn more, visit


Dalton Finkbeiner

Communications and Marketing Coordinator - Rugby Ontario

    647-560-4790 x 1006


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