Editor’s note: This article contains some disturbing details about experiences at residential schools in Canada and may be upsetting to some readers. For those in need of emotional support, the 24-hour Residential Schools Crisis Line is available at 1-866-925-4419.
EDMONTON – The Alberta government says it’s putting up nearly $8-million for Indigenous-led mental-health programs that will include support to help residential school survivors and their families heal.
Health Minister Tyler Shandro says almost $2.9 million will go to First Nations, Metis Settlements, and the Metis Nation of Alberta.
Community members will be able to apply for one-time grants of up to $50,000 per group for individual and family counselling or traditional healing and talking circles.
Shandro said the remaining money will be given to an Alberta Health Services Indigenous program that provides culturally appropriate health services for Indigenous people.
The funding announcement follows recent discoveries of unmarked graves at residential school sites that continue to traumatize Canada’s Indigenous Peoples.
The Cowessess First Nation in Saskatchewan found 751 unmarked graves at a former residential school.
Earlier this year, the Alberta government announced $8 million dollars in funding for local First Nations to use in their searches for unmarked graves.
The Metis Nation of Alberta said it would be searching the site of a former residential school in St. Albert for unmarked graves.
– With files from the Canadian Press