The residential school experiences of Inuit Peoples are unique and integrally linked to rapid social and political change in the North, beginning in the mid-20th century. This exhibition, which tells the story through first-person narratives and archival images.
This exhibition tells the stories of eight Inuit Residential School Survivors presented in their own words and illustrated with personal and historical photographs, including their memories of childhood and their experiences of school, the struggles they have already overcome and the challenges they still face today.
This exhibition has played an important role in generating dialogue within Inuit communities and among non-Indigenous Canadians. Survivors have said that many Inuit communities still find it difficult to talk about this issue and many visitors to the exhibition for the time understood that there were differences between the First Nations, Inuit and Metis experience of these schools.
The last Residential School – Grollier Hall, a Residential School for Indian and Inuit children in Inuvik, North West Territories, opened in 1959 and was run by the Oblates until 1985. It closed in 1997 and the impacts have been devastating on generations. The school was situated beside Stringer Hall, a similar facility operated by the Anglican church. Each facility had a capacity for 250 children. As of 1970 the Government of the NWT assumed control of Stringer Hall. It was demolished in 2001.