Canada 150+ is grounded in community consultation, direction from Vancouver’s Urban Aboriginal Peoples Advisory Committee (UAPAC), and permission from our three Host Nations.
Canada 150+ is grounded in community consultation, direction from Vancouver’s Urban Aboriginal Peoples Advisory Committee, and permission from our three Host Nations.
In 2015, Vancouverites were consulted about how to mark the 150th anniversary of the Canadian Confederation. What we heard is best encapsulated in this anonymous response:
“I am completely stuck on how to honour and acknowledge Indigenous peoples. I am most proud of being an immigrant and most ashamed of being a settler whose colonial practices caused such devastation. How do we express gratitude to Indigenous peoples across this land where we are so, so, so, so lucky to stand?”
The Urban Aboriginal Peoples Advisory Committee advised about Indigenous engagement and programming, which is represented in our Signature and Associated Events. Equally important, the UAPAC advised that Vancouver’s project be branded “Canada 150+” knowing that "Canada 150" was not going to garner much Aboriginal support. Canada 150+ aims to:
- Acknowledge the Indigenous peoples who have been here since time immemorial
- Represent that there is history in this land that predates colonization
- Represent that Vancouver’s Canada 150+ experience is also about looking to the future, and all communities, Nations and peoples walking together as a stronger society than ever before
- Set the mark for what we hope to achieve in all cities and communities across Canada
- Present Vancouver with the opportunity to be its best, as a City of Reconciliation that reflects and recognizes Indigenous peoples and cultures.
The UAPAC’s vision informed an artist call for a Canada 150+ logo. Selected by members of the three Host Nations, the winning design was created by Musqueam artist Thomas Cannell. In Thomas’s words, “The logo is a design is about people coming together. Canada 150+ is a celebration for everyone, which is why I have used so many people in this design, including children. Learn more at thomascannell.com
To learn about our three Host Nations, please read the summaries below, which are in their own words and from their respective websites.
The Musqueam people have lived in our present location for thousands of years. Our traditional territory occupies what is now Vancouver and surrounding areas…We are traditional hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓ speaking people and have descended from the cultural group known as the Coast Salish. Our people moved throughout our traditional territory using the resources the land provided for fishing, hunting, trapping and gathering, to maintain their livelihood. Today, the Musqueam people still use these resources for economical and traditional purposes…Although a metropolitan city has developed in the heart of Musqueam territory, our community maintains strong cultural and traditional beliefs. Today our population flourishes and we are a strong community living on a very small portion of our traditional territory, located south of Marine Drive near the mouth of the Fraser River.www.musqueam.bc.ca
The Squamish Nation is comprised of descendants of the Coast Salish Aboriginal peoples who lived in the present day Greater Vancouver area; Gibson’s landing and Squamish River watershed…The Squamish Nation is a vibrant and dynamic Coast Salish Nation, with a strong culture, rich history and bright future. The Squamish Nation has existed and prospered within our traditional territory since time immemorial. We are Coast Salish people. Our language is the Squamish language. Our society is, and always has been, organized and sophisticated, with complex laws and rules governing all forms of social relations, economic rights and relations with other First Nations. We have never ceded or surrendered title to our lands, rights to our resources or the power to make decisions within our territory.www.squamish.net
We are the Tsleil-Waututh Nation, "The People of the Inlet." We have inhabited the lands and waters of our traditional territory surrounding the Burrard Inlet in British Columbia since time immemorial. Many generations of men, women and children have lived, had families, and thrived in this area, and we have a sacred trust, a commitment to care for our lands and waters. Our vision is to once again put the Tsleil-Waututh face on our traditional territory, to be active participants in all social, economic, cultural, and political activities that take place on our lands by building strong relationships based on trust and mutual respect. We welcome you to learn more about us.www.twnation.ca
Métis Nation British Columbia
Additionally, we acknowledge the unique role of Métis Nation British Columbia which represents nearly 70,000 self-identified Métis people in British Columbia, of that, nearly 16,000 are provincially registered Métis Citizens with MNBC. “Recognized by the Métis National Council, the Provincial Government of British Columbia and the Federal Government of Canada, MNBC continues to push for respectful recognition and reconciliation of our inherent Aboriginal rights, and our existence within the Canadian federation.”www.mnbc.ca
Canada 150+ is a year-long experience designed to give a unique, Vancouver focus to Canada’s 150th anniversary of Confederation. As a City of Reconciliation, Vancouver is using this opportunity as a time for Indigenous recognition and celebration with all Vancouverites.
This year shall quickly pass, however, and it signifies only the first step in Canada’s generations-long journey towards truth and reconciliation. There are many opportunities for you, your family, your business, and your community to continue to engage in this process. We hope you continue to learn about the Indigenous land beneath your feet.
Read from the vast collection about Canada’s systematic and intentional Indigenous assimilation policies.Learn More
Host a workshop for your staff about how to work effectively with Indigenous people.Learn More
Explore pathways to reconciliation and develop community-based and community-driven reconciliation action plans.Learn More
Indigenous organizations need ongoing support to keep operations sustainable. Buy tickets, volunteer, join a board, donate!Learn More
Support the development of DiverseTheatreBC, a fully searchable database envisioned to increase employment of and collaboration among theatre artists of colour.Learn More
Be a tourist in your own town. Visit Indigenous exhibition spaces like the Museum of Anthropology or the Bill Reid Gallery.Learn More
The Musqueam Cultural Education Resource Centre houses authentic public art installations created by local Musqueam carvers, weavers, painters, and more.Learn More
Check out the work of Aboriginal and Métis artists. Enjoy traditional foods or familiar fare with an Indigenous twist.Learn More
Take a guided interpretive paddle in replica ocean-going canoes or sea kayaks. Learn the legends, songs, and stories of local waters from an Indigenous point of view.Learn More
Aboriginal Tourism BC promotes amazing Indigenous events, tourism destinations, and packages which offer unique ways to explore Aboriginal landmarks and traditions.Learn More
Kwi Awt Stelmexw and Squamish Nation are offering a certificate program in First Nations language proficiency at SFU.Learn More
Celebrate National Aboriginal Day in Vancouver. The biggest annual celebration is at Trout Lake, but you can find activities and celebrations all around the city.Learn More
Post your company’s employment opportunities on the job gateway at Aboriginal Community Career Employment Services Society.Learn More
Hosting an event? Consider renting Indigenous cultural spaces in Vancouver.Learn More
Our private sector partners invest in Indigenous projects and organizations. Why not invest in them?Learn More