Orange Shirt Day Fundraiser for the Indian Residential School Survivors Society

In recognition of the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation (30 September), Design de Plume is selling orange t-shirts to raise money for the Indian Residential School Survivors Society (IRSSS). The IRSSS provides essential support to residential school survivors, their families, and those living with the effects of intergenerational trauma.

Residential schools were government-sponsored religious schools that were established to assimilate Indigenous children into Euro-Canadian settler society. With this purpose in mind, Indigenous children were removed from their parents, extended families, and home communities and relocated to residential facilities where they endured physical, emotional, and sexual violence at the hands of their Euro-Canadian caretakers. Over the summer of 2021, the unmarked graves of nearly 1,400 Indigenous children were discovered in Kamloops, BC; Brandon, MB; Marieval, SK; Cranbrook / Ktunaxa First Nation, BC; and Kuper Island / Penelakut Island, BC. Although the discovery in Kamloops led to international scrutiny, investigations into the unmarked gravesites of residential school victims have been undertaken since the 1970s. To date, between 2,300 and 2,800 Indigenous children are believed to have been murdered by residential school staff and caretakers.

The graphic for the Every Child Matters T-shirt. The graphic is of a child's hand inside a bird, and a plant in deep purple and beige that reads "Every Child Matters" below the graphic.

Also recognized on 30 September, Orange Shirt Day is a legacy of the St. Joseph Mission Residential School Commemoration Project and Reunion events that took place in Williams Lake, BC in May 2013, which brought together former students and their families from the Secwepemic, Tsilhqot’in, Southern Dakelh, and St’at’imc Nations. While designed to commemorate the residential school experience and to honour the healing journeys of survivors and their families, the events were also intended to keep the reconciliation process alive. Consequently, Orange Shirt Day is an invitation to the global community to not only create meaningful discussion about the traumas inflicted upon the victims and survivors of residential schools, their families, and their communities, but to galvanize that global community into supporting residential school survivors and their families while holding those responsible for these atrocities accountable.

Every child matters.

Help us support the survivors of Indian Residential Schools and their families by purchasing one of our limited-edition orange t-shirts. These shirts were designed by Jennica Robinson, a member of Aundeck Omni Kaning First Nation and Design de Plume’s senior graphic designer. Shirts will be available through 30 September 2022, though please note that if you wish to receive your shirt in time to wear on Orange Shirt Day, you should purchase your shirt at least three weeks prior to 30 September as shipping times may vary. Shirts are priced in $USD, and all proceeds from these shirts will be donated to the IRSSS.

All orange shirts