The values of respect and equality are essential to Momentum’s Indigenous Reconciliation Strategy, and with the talent of Keegan Starlight of Tsuut’ina Nation, a new art piece has been installed at Momentum’s entrance to bring those values to life. As a visual representation of Momentum’s commitment to reconciliation, this new mural was installed to create a welcoming space for Indigenous participants, learners, stakeholders, and staff.
“It is a symbol that reconciliation matters to us and that hopefully people can see in our actions that yes, there’s a mural that’s up, but there’s also other deeper work that we’re doing to make sure as an organization, we are a good ally and a good place to be for Indigenous learners and partners,” says Resource Development Director, Brian Hill.
The art piece was unveiled as part of Momentum’s Indigenous Learning Event on June 23.
“An important point in our Indigenous engagement strategy is that we’ve created a welcoming space,” Brian says. “It is a signal of respecting the land and respecting the people who lived here and tended the land long before us.”
The mural is vibrant and visual, recognizing each of the Treaty 7 First Nations and Metis Nation, Region 3. Each teepee within the piece resembles the different Treaty 7 Nations, and the human elements in the art serve as a representation of the Indigenous people themselves. The mural also contains a single orange flower, placed to commemorate the 215 children that were recently found at the Kamloops Residential School.
Momentum’s Indigenous Engagement Strategy has four pillars – learn, partner, commit and grow. As an organization, Momentum strives to create an inclusive and respectful environment, one who’s space serves as a reminder of those continuous efforts. The mural can be interpreted as a message to learn about Indigenous history and culture, partner to create meaningful two-way relationships, commit to truth and reconciliation, and grow to integrate Indigenous perspectives into the space.
“When people walk into the space, they’re not connecting to an institution they’re connecting to a community,” says Brian. “It’s one output of something bigger and deeper that we’re trying to do.”