Phyllis Webstad (nee Jack) is Northern Secwepemc (Shuswap) from the Stswecem’c Xgat’tem First Nation (Canoe Creek Indian Band). She comes from mixed Secwepemc and Irish/French heritage. She was born in Dog Creek and lives in Williams Lake, BC, Canada. In 2018 Phyllis Webstad launched her children’s book called “The Orange Shirt Story” to share her story in her own words. The Orange shirt story tells the story of young Phyllis having her orange shirt taken away on her first day of residential school and never to see it again. A simple orange shirt has become a conversation starter for all aspects of residential school across Canada and beyond. Phyllis has inspired thousands and thousands of people to honour residential school survivors and their families and share the call on September 30th of each year that “EVERY CHILD MATTERS.” Phyllis is well respected for her work, her courage and for striving to heal our communities and Nation through speaking her truth.

The Orange Shirt Society is a nonprofit society, based in Williams Lake, BC that guides the Orange Shirt Day movement. The purposes of The Society are:

1. To support Indian Residential School reconciliation.

2. To create awareness of the individual, family and community intergenerational impacts of Indian Residential Schools through Orange Shirt Society activities.

3. To create awareness of the concept of “Every Child Matters”.

Phyllis Webstad (nee Jack) is Northern Secwepemc (Shuswap) from the Stswecem’c Xgat’tem First Nation (Canoe Creek Indian Band). She comes from mixed Secwepemc and Irish/French heritage. She was born in Dog Creek and lives in Williams Lake, BC, Canada. In 2018 Phyllis Webstad launched her children’s book called “The Orange Shirt Story” to share her story in her own words. The Orange shirt story tells the story of young Phyllis having her orange shirt taken away on her first day of residential school and never to see it again. A simple orange shirt has become a conversation starter for all aspects of residential school across Canada and beyond. Phyllis has inspired thousands and thousands of people to honour residential school survivors and their families and share the call on September 30th of each year that “EVERY CHILD MATTERS.” Phyllis is well respected for her work, her courage and for striving to heal our communities and Nation through speaking her truth.

The Orange Shirt Society is a nonprofit society, based in Williams Lake, BC that guides the Orange Shirt Day movement. The purposes of The Society are:

1. To support Indian Residential School reconciliation.

2. To create awareness of the individual, family and community intergenerational impacts of Indian Residential Schools through Orange Shirt Society activities.

3. To create awareness of the concept of “Every Child Matters”.

Phyllis Webstad (nee Jack) is Northern Secwepemc (Shuswap) from the Stswecem’c Xgat’tem First Nation (Canoe Creek Indian Band). She comes from mixed Secwepemc and Irish/French heritage. She was born in Dog Creek and lives in Williams Lake, BC, Canada. In 2018 Phyllis Webstad launched her children’s book called “The Orange Shirt Story” to share her story in her own words. The Orange shirt story tells the story of young Phyllis having her orange shirt taken away on her first day of residential school and never to see it again. A simple orange shirt has become a conversation starter for all aspects of residential school across Canada and beyond. Phyllis has inspired thousands and thousands of people to honour residential school survivors and their families and share the call on September 30th of each year that “EVERY CHILD MATTERS.” Phyllis is well respected for her work, her courage and for striving to heal our communities and Nation through speaking her truth.

The Orange Shirt Society is a nonprofit society, based in Williams Lake, BC that guides the Orange Shirt Day movement. The purposes of The Society are:

1. To support Indian Residential School reconciliation.

2. To create awareness of the individual, family and community intergenerational impacts of Indian Residential Schools through Orange Shirt Society activities.

3. To create awareness of the concept of “Every Child Matters”.

Phyllis Webstad (nee Jack) is Northern Secwepemc (Shuswap) from the Stswecem’c Xgat’tem First Nation (Canoe Creek Indian Band). She comes from mixed Secwepemc and Irish/French heritage. She was born in Dog Creek and lives in Williams Lake, BC, Canada. In 2018 Phyllis Webstad launched her children’s book called “The Orange Shirt Story” to share her story in her own words. The Orange shirt story tells the story of young Phyllis having her orange shirt taken away on her first day of residential school and never to see it again. A simple orange shirt has become a conversation starter for all aspects of residential school across Canada and beyond. Phyllis has inspired thousands and thousands of people to honour residential school survivors and their families and share the call on September 30th of each year that “EVERY CHILD MATTERS.” Phyllis is well respected for her work, her courage and for striving to heal our communities and Nation through speaking her truth.

The Orange Shirt Society is a nonprofit society, based in Williams Lake, BC that guides the Orange Shirt Day movement. The purposes of The Society are:

1. To support Indian Residential School reconciliation.

2. To create awareness of the individual, family and community intergenerational impacts of Indian Residential Schools through Orange Shirt Society activities.

3. To create awareness of the concept of “Every Child Matters”.

Phyllis Webstad (nee Jack) is Northern Secwepemc (Shuswap) from the Stswecem’c Xgat’tem First Nation (Canoe Creek Indian Band). She comes from mixed Secwepemc and Irish/French heritage. She was born in Dog Creek and lives in Williams Lake, BC, Canada. In 2018 Phyllis Webstad launched her children’s book called “The Orange Shirt Story” to share her story in her own words. The Orange shirt story tells the story of young Phyllis having her orange shirt taken away on her first day of residential school and never to see it again. A simple orange shirt has become a conversation starter for all aspects of residential school across Canada and beyond. Phyllis has inspired thousands and thousands of people to honour residential school survivors and their families and share the call on September 30th of each year that “EVERY CHILD MATTERS.” Phyllis is well respected for her work, her courage and for striving to heal our communities and Nation through speaking her truth.

The Orange Shirt Society is a nonprofit society, based in Williams Lake, BC that guides the Orange Shirt Day movement. The purposes of The Society are:

1. To support Indian Residential School reconciliation.

2. To create awareness of the individual, family and community intergenerational impacts of Indian Residential Schools through Orange Shirt Society activities.

3. To create awareness of the concept of “Every Child Matters”.

The Orange Shirt Society is a nonprofit society, based in Williams Lake, BC that guides the Orange Shirt Day movement. The purposes of The Society are:

1. To support Indian Residential School reconciliation.

2. To create awareness of the individual, family and community intergenerational impacts of Indian Residential Schools through Orange Shirt Society activities.

3. To create awareness of the concept of “Every Child Matters”.

Canada’s relationship with its Indigenous people has suffered as a result of both the residential school system and the lack of understanding of the historical and current impact of those schools. Healing and repairing that relationship requires education, awareness and increased understanding of the legacy and the impacts still being felt by survivors and their families. Guided by acclaimed Indigenous author Monique Gray Smith, readers will learn about the lives of Survivors and listen to allies who are putting the findings of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission into action.

From the Author:

In Speaking Our Truth, we are embarking on a journey of reconciliation. This isn’t a read-and-do-nothing kind of book. It is an active exploration of Canada’s collective history, our present and our future. It’s about how we grow as individuals, families, communities and as a country.

For some of you, this may be a time of significant change in your understanding of Canada’s history. It might be the first time you’ve thought about what reconciliation means and, more specifically, what it means to you and what your role in it is. Simply reading Speaking Our Truth is an act of reconciliation. So, good on you! I welcome you all to the journey.

In my Nihiyaw (Cree) language, we say tawâw, which loosely means “there’s always room.” For you, for me, for your friends, your family, your community. There’s always room. —Monique Gray Smith