World News – CA – The Mohawk Institute: A first look at the old residential school, preserved to tell its story – CityNews Toronto


The Mohawk Institute in Brantford is one of the last two Indian residential schools in Ontario Other such buildings have been demolished or converted, but the hope is that this location will be preserved for better understanding and better learning Breakfast Television is the first medium to pass through this building since the renovations, with host Melanie Ng on tour

Every room, every wall and every door contains decades of pain and suffering Carley Gallant-Jenkins, coordinator of « Save The Evidence, » talks about her story Founded in 1831, the children of the Six Nations were taken from their homes. parents and brought here to assimilate – with the goal of eliminating their indigenous cultures and languages

Entering the different rooms, Gallant-Jenkins indicates what would happen in each, starting with the boys side of the building

« The teachers and professors who worked here would drag the boys out of their beds at night, bring them here, make them fight and they would look through the windows, » says Gallant-Jenkins

« The boy who lost would then have to clean up The boy who won would have additional benefits, » she adds, referring to the « battle lane »

Moving on to the boiler room, we learn that physical and sexual abuse has often taken place in these types of areas due to their noise level

« One of the girls’ roles was to do laundry for the students and the surrounding community, » says Gallant-Jenkins

“They were hired at the school to do the laundry for the community; the school benefited from their work « 

The cafeteria, which was a gathering space where siblings could see each other, was separated by gender and number

In 1970, the Mohawk Institute closed its doors but reopened two years later as a Woodland Cultural Center It was considered a local historic site so that decisions remained in the hands of the community

The center was designed to promote First Nations culture and heritage After a major flood in 2013 which caused severe damage to the building, the community voted to rebuild it

« If it’s a pile of rubble with a plaque to say what it was, it’s not the same as walking through these hallways and standing where those children, « said Gallant-Jenkins when asked why the decision to restore the building was made

‘Save The Evidence’ Campaign Costs Millions of Dollars The ideal timeline was for the building to reopen in 2020, but fundraising efforts were hampered due to the COVID-19 pandemic. hundreds of thousands more to collect, organizers are now hoping for a 2022 opening

« I think I want people, personally, to have the resilience, to see what happened to these people and where these communities are today, » says Gallant-Jenkins

Click here to participate in a virtual tour of your choice, for a small fee to support fundraising efforts

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Mohawk Institute Residential School, Indian Residential School System, School, Breakfast Television

News from around the world – CA – The Mohawk Institute: A First Look at the Former Residential School , preserved to tell its story – CityNews Toronto



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