Residential School Documentaries, Videos, & Podcasts

Truth and Reconciliation Week: September 25 - September 30, 2023

"Orange Shirt Day provides all Canadians with an opportunity to come together in a collective act of reconciliation and hope for generations of children to come."

Local Documentaries 

We Are Still Here - Local Documentary 

"We Are Still Here" documentary features three local women from Bkejwanong Territory, also known as Walpole Island First Nation, and Aamjiwnaang First Nation.  The three elders share their memories of surviving residential schools. 


Full Version

Aftershock - Local Documentary 

"Aftershock" documentary features the children of the three local women from Bkejwanong Territory, also known as Walpole Island First Nation, and Aamjiwnaang First Nation.  This is the story of the next generation of the three elders who shared their memories of surviving residential schools in the "We Are Still Here" documentary. 

Aftershock 10min version.mp4

Aftershock (10 min Version)

Aftershock 40 min.mp4

Aftershock (Full Version)

We Are Still Here and Aftershock (Combined) Documentary

This documentary is a combined documentary of the two above films, capturing the essence of both films with the generation that attended residential schools and the intergenerational trauma.  

What Does Truth, Reconciliation,  and Hope Mean to You? 

The following three videos, entitled "Truth", "Reconciliation" and "Hope" include intimate interviews with residential school survivors, indigenous youth and leaders in education and politics. They're an excellent tool to spark discussion about this troubling history as well as how we can build a better future. 

The Secret Path

Gord Downie, the lead singer of the Canadian band,  The Tragically Hip, is bringing attention to one of the most haunting legacies in our country's history - the residential school system and the children and families who were affected by it all. Downie released a multimedia project called The Secret Path, which consists of an album with 10 new songs, and a graphic novel by Jeff Lemire. The project is devoted to sharing the story of 12 year old Chanie Wenjack, an Anishinabe boy who died from hunger and exposure after escaping from his residential school to try and find his way home. 

The Secret Path - CBC Arts

Videos & Documentaries 

Historica Canada 

Residential schools were government-sponsored religious schools established to assimilate Indigenous children into Euro-Canadian culture. Although the first residential facilities were established in New France, the term usually refers to the custodial schools established after 1880. Originally conceived by Christian churches and the Canadian government as an attempt to both educate and convert Indigenous youth and to integrate them into Canadian society, residential schools disrupted lives and communities, causing long-term problems among Indigenous peoples. Since the last residential school closed in 1996, former students have pressed for recognition and restitution, resulting in the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement in 2007 and a formal public apology by Prime Minister Stephen Harper in 2008. In total, an estimated 150,000 First Nation, Inuit, and Métis children attended residential schools.

Clouds of Autumn

This film focuses on a young Indigenous boy named William and his older sister Shayl whose carefree childhoods are torn apart when Shayl is forced to attend a residential school. Singular visual interpretations infuse co-director Trevor Mack’s family history with a slowly shifting tone that evokes loss and love. 

Residential Schools Podcast Series 

The Secret Life of Canada Podcast Series

The Métis Residential School Experience

The Inuit Residential School Experience

Cultural Mindfulness

"Everyone has a story. The first step towards understanding other people is learning about their past. George Couchie takes us through some of his Indigenous culture and history, educating us about the impacts of residential schools. Inspiring youth Angel Armstrong, Mckenzie Ottereyes Eagle, and Miigwan Buswa share their connection to the past and show us how they are stopping those negative cycles by embracing culture.