The BC Lions announced this morning details surrounding our Orange Shirt Day Game on Friday, September 30 presented by Prospera Credit Union and BC Hydro.
This initiative is the result of a unique partnership between the Orange Shirt Society, the Indian Residential School Survivors Society, the Ending Violence Association of BC and the BC Lions Football Club.
The Orange Shirt Day Game is also supported by Fortis BC, Pomerleau Construction and Leavitt Machinery.
During the week 17 matchup at BC Place, members of the Lions and Ottawa REDBLACKS will proudly wear orange spatting in recognition and respect for Canada’s National Day for Truth and Reconciliation– a federal statutory holiday held on September 30 every year.
Dating back to 2013, the date of September 30 has been marked as Orange Shirt Day in recognition of survivors of Canada’s Indian Residential School System and their families.
“We are extremely proud to be hosting the Orange Shirt Day game for our second year to show our support on the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. As an organization, we feel it is important to raise awareness for the tragic and painful history and ongoing impacts of residential schools and to engage with the Indigenous community in a positive way,” says BC Lions, director of community partnerships, Jamie Taras.
New for 2022, the Lions will also wear the special Indigenous-themed logo on our helmets. The logo was designed by Kwakwaka’wakw/Tlingit artist Corrine Hunt. You can read more about the story behind this special logo design HERE.
“I’m delighted that the BC Lions Orange Shirt Day Game is taking place for another year. Last year my dream of honouring residential school survivors and their families at a Lions game came into reality. It is important that we continue to spread the message of Truth and Reconciliation,” said Phyllis Webstad, whose story is the inspiration for starting Orange Shirt Day back in 2013.
“Although I won’t be in attendance at the game this year I will be there in spirit and encourage everyone to wear Orange in support of the Lions and the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.”
The BC Lions football club will provide a minimum of 350 complimentary tickets and food vouchers through IRSSS to residential school survivors and their families. The first 10,000 fans through the doors will receive a complimentary orange t-shirt which features the logo designed by Corrine Hunt as well as the Orange Shirt Society’s official slogan, “Every Child Matters.” The partnership also will provide a $20,000 donation to the Orange Shirt Society.
“Our team at Prospera is deeply committed to broadening our understanding of Indigenous history and supporting diversity, equity and inclusion across our organization and the communities where we live, work and play,” says TJ Schmaltz, chief people and legal officer at Prospera.
“As part of our journey, we partnered with the BC Lions in bringing a football program to Indigenous youth earlier this year and are proud to help raise awareness for truth and reconciliation among our employees and at the Orange Shirt Day game on September 30.”
The Orange Shirt Day Game will also showcase the theme ‘Sport is Medicine.’ Throughout the game, we will highlight survivors who have dealt with adversity through sport and also showcase some current indigenous athletes. In addition, Elders from the Musqueam, Squamish, Tsleil-Waututh and Métis Nations will be in attendance and honoured throughout the night.
New for 2022, our Indigenous Vendor Marketplace will feature vendors on the BC Place concourse getting the chance to showcase and sell their various goods. A line of merchandise featuring our Corrine Hunt First Nations logo will also be available for purchase. 100% of the merchandise proceeds will go to the Orange Shirt Society and Indian Residential School Survivors Society and to hosting survivors of the residential schools and their families at BC Lions home games.
It will also be a special evening for entertainment. DJ Orene Askew (AKA DJ O Show from Squamish Nation) will be our featured in-game DJ while the halftime show will feature drummers and dancers from Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations.
“As an organization, we are committed to Reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples, which has put us all on a journey of learning, strengthening relationships and taking action. We are grateful to participate in Orange Shirt Day with the BC Lions as well as providing funding to organizations that are offering essential support services to Survivors of residential schools. Many of our employees will be handing out t-shirts to attendees at the game, while others will be wearing orange in their communities to commemorate the National Day of Truth & Reconciliation.’”says Doug Slater, vice president, external and Indigenous relations, FortisBC
“We are honoured to join forces with the BC Lions in support of Orange Shirt Day and be part of the change. Pomerleau’s three-year partnership with the BC Lions not only aligns with our desire to foster closer connections with Indigenous communities but also to create an impact that will make a difference in shaping our communities,” says Bradley Gunnlaugson, Pomerleau’s regional director in Vancouver.
Leavitt Machinery executive VP and COO, John Mutis:
“Leavitt Machinery is honoured to be included in raising awareness for Truth and Reconciliation. The BC Lions Orange Shirt Day Game held on Sept. 30th presents a forum where the level of awareness can be elevated to thousands of people across the province.
The education on the meaning of this important day must be far-reaching. What the BC Lions have done here to raise awareness of Truth and Reconciliation across Canada should be commended. Leavitt Machinery’s own path of education is continually evolving. We will continue to help in driving the education for years to come and lend our support in all ways possible to such a worthy endeavour.”