Hear Our Voices: Michel People and Residential Schools

The Friends of Michel Society

July 9 – October 12

Opening reception: July 13 at 1 pm at the Musée Héritage Museum

Whispers at the kitchen table. A teddy bear left behind. Lost traditions. All reminders of Residential Schools.

In this exhibition Michel People share their stories, both as direct and intergenerational Survivors of Residential Schools. “We wanted to document and be a witness to those Michel People who survived Residential School. We also want everyone to understand the impact Residential Schools had, not only on Survivors, but on Michel people who came after,” — Maureen Callihoo Ligtvoet.

For some people of the former Michel Band #472, this is the first opportunity to share their experiences outside of their immediate families. “We [Michel People] need context of why we are here, how we got here. Let’s release the shackles of the past. We are not tied to them,” — Dayle Callihoo-Campbell.

Documenting the truth about Residential Schools is both timely and necessary for Indigenous and non-Indigenous people alike. The Friends of Michel Society invites you to hear our voices.

The exhibition will provide information about Residential Schools and will focus on those institutions where Michel children were taken.

From October 2022 to January 2023, 29 Michel People shared their experiences with Residential Schools as part of the Friends of Michel Society’s Residential School Memorialization Project. These interviews are the centerpiece of this exhibit collaboration with the Musée Héritage.

We are so grateful to those Michel People who chose to share their stories.

Indigenous and non-Indigenous people alike need to understand the impacts of Residential School. There are those who either downplay or do not believe Residential Schools happened. As Michel People, we know that so many of us are impacted. Now, we have the opportunity to document our truth and have our voices heard.