Centre at the Forks Indigenous Legacies Project creates a 'living legacy' for First Nations communities

Nov. 16, 2017

As we celebrate our country’s 150th anniversary, Canadians across the nation are paying tribute to Indigenous Peoples who came before us – their culture, their history, and their heritage. These efforts of reconciliation include acknowledging a very dark part of Canadian history; that is, the residential school legacy.

For many years, this piece of Canadian history was swept under the rug. As a result, many Canadians do not have significant knowledge of First Nations history in our country. Furthermore, there are many members of the First Nations community that do not have an understanding of their own culture and history. With the help of a $175,000 Community Vitality grant, Museum London will be bringing First nations culture to the forefront with its Centre at the Forks Indigenous Legacies Project project.

Community Vitality recipient Brian Meehan, ED Museum London receiving plaque for Centre at the Forks project from  Helen Connell, Chair Grants Committee LCFThe Centre at the Forks Indigenous Legacies Project is a two-year community mobilization project that will engage London and area Indigenous community leaders, organizations and individuals as co-creators of community outreach and cultural activities, while providing the opportunity to present a more inclusive history of London that includes the First Nations story. This project will educate Londoners about the essential role of First Nations history around the Forks of the Thames while celebrating contemporary First Nations art and culture.

“The First Nations community does not yet see themselves reflected in London’s efforts for ‘place making’ at the Forks of the Thames," says Brian Meehan, Executive Director, Museum London. "This initiative provides a significant opportunity for the Indigenous community and their artists, writers and performers to play a key role in the presentation of an expanded vision of our community’s history”

Centre at the Forks Indigenous Legacies Project will make First Nations’ history a living history and further establish the Museum’s role as a vibrant history museum. The hope is that the City, Museum and First Nations community can come together through this project to address some of the goals of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission at the Forks of the Thames.

Learn more about the 2017 Community Vitality grant recipients