City of Calgary kicks off Indigenous Awareness Month

June is National Indigenous History month and June 1 marked the first day of Indigenous Awareness Month (IAM) at The City. IAM collectively acknowledges not only National Indigenous History Month but also Aboriginal Awareness Week Calgary (June 19 – 23, 2023) and National Indigenous Peoples Day (June 21).

This year’s theme, “I am...” reflects The City’s commitment to supporting all members of Indigenous communities. We invite you to join this month’s celebrations and experience Indigenous Peoples as they truly are, rather than seeing them in the stigmatized way they’re often portrayed.

“This month we’re striving to break down old stereotypes and showcase both the shared colonial history that has made us the resilient community we are as well as the passion of our Indigenous communities as they are now,” says Dr. Terry Poucette, Indigenous Relations Lead for The City of Calgary.

Events this month include:

  • Runway fashion show featuring Indigenous fashion for men and women by Indigenous youth designers from Siksika Nation High School
  • Lunchtime round-robin Blackfoot Hand game tournament as demonstrated by the Siksika High School NLC (Natosi Learning Center). A short tournament will take place at noon hour, featuring a team from some of the City Council and Administrators
  • Metis jigging lessons from expert dancers
  • IndigiTRAILS: Echoes of the Past, Augmented Reality (AR) Launch Event

Another highlight of the month is the 2023 Indigenous Drag Show. Designed to break down old colonial notions of drag, the show will celebrate two spirit community members and their deep, cultural significance and roots in Indigenous communities. This event is meant offers all Calgarians the opportunity to lend support to the broader 2SLGBTQ+ community and for The City to reaffirm its corporate commitment to truth, reconciliation, equity, diversity, inclusion and belonging.

The City’s partner Aboriginal Awareness Week Calgary, is hosting both the opening ceremonies and a family pow wow at Calgary’s Stampede Park during Aboriginal Awareness Week this month, so there are a number of ways that Calgarians can get involved.

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