University of the Fraser Valley

National Indigenous Peoples Day

National Indigenous Peoples Day

éy swáyel

Each year, National Indigenous Peoples Day is recognized on June 21. It is a time to reflect and celebrate the history, heritage, resilience, and diversity of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis across Canada.

Across Stó:lō Téméxw, there is much to honour. Since time immemorial, the Stó:lō people have been the stewards of the lands upon which the University of the Fraser Valley is located.

I am humbled by the resiliency, generosity, and kindness of the Stó:lō people as they continue to share their knowledge, wisdom, and culture with us while we work towards placing Stó:lō ways of knowing and being at the core of the University.

I wish to extend my deepest gratitude to the Elders, Traditional Knowledge Keepers, and Indigenous Leaders, both within and outside of UFV, who have walked with us and continue to help guide our journey towards truth, reconciliation, and decolonization. UFV remains committed to a path of lasting and meaningful reconciliation with all Indigenous people.

To our Indigenous faculty, staff, and students, we raise our hands to you for your leadership as we strive to be Íyáqáwtxw – a house of transformation – where you are welcomed and celebrated every day of the year. We acknowledge the lasting and ongoing harm that educational systems have had on Indigenous people in Turtle Island. Despite the genocide perpetrated by residential schools, there are symbols all around us that Stó:lō culture, language, art, and Snoweyelh (laws of the land) have survived. We are honoured by the trust you have placed in us to be a part of our UFV community and by the courage of Indigenous peoples to persevere.

As we commemorate National Indigenous Peoples Day, let us reaffirm our commitment to the 94 calls to action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and prioritizing our journey together of building a more inclusive and equitable society where Indigenous knowledge and culture are honoured and celebrated in all aspects of our academic and campus life.

kw’as hó:y

James Mandigo
Acting President and Vice-Chancellor

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