Reading & Reconciliation
COMMUNITY READING PROGRAM
The Gabriola Arts Council and partners Friends of the Gabriola Library, Gabriola Island Branch of the Vancouver Island Regional Library, Gabriola Island Local Trust Committee, Gabriola Museum and Historical Society, Page’s Bookstore & Marina, and the Snuneymuxw First Nation are launching a community reading program. We’re encouraging all Gabriolans to read one book—Richard Wagamese’s novel, Medicine Walk—and to come together for a facilitated community conversation to discuss the ideas and issues that arise out of the reading.
“A breathtaking novel of sorrow, hope, and polished steel.”
— Thomas King
“… Wagamese’s cri de coeur for the Canada that could be … A testament to the redemptive power of love and compassion.”
— Globe & Mail
“… a work of art that explores human interconnectedness with a level of artistry so superb that the personal becomes eternal.”
— National Post
Many communities have adopted One Book, One Community programs. On Gabriola, our intentions are:
- to promote reading and to build community through the shared experience of reading and discussing the same books;
- to contribute to a community-wide process of fostering new and positive relationships with First Nations people and communities on Gabriola Island and in neighbouring regions;
- to share thoughts, experiences, questions, and responses to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) and the 94 Calls to Action;
- to learn from and share with our Snuneymuxw neighbours.
Celestine Aleck, author of numerous books for children and Snuneymuxw Cultural Support Worker, says:
“I love that the program is called One Book, One Community. It leads me to know that you live by Nautsamaut—or one mind, one heart. When we do things together, we do it with one mind and one heart.”
We will be holding a community conversation on Friday, April 7 at 7 pm at the Gabriola Arts & Heritage Centre. Celestine Aleck will be present for the conversation, along with author and Indigenous Community Consultant Monique Gray Smith. The evening will be hosted by TRC Honorary Witness Shelagh Rogers.
The program is now underway. Multiple copies of the book are available in the Library and through Page’s Bookstore. We hope to have as many Gabriolans as possible reading together throughout February and March. We encourage you to engage in discussions with family, friends, and colleagues. Come to the Community Conversation gathering in April to engage in an open-hearted conversation, and join others across Canada who are working towards the goals of the TRC.
We have compiled a list of additional titles [view and/or download the Reading for Reconciliation list] for those interested in reading further, including poetry, nonfiction, and books for children and teens. The additional reading list is also available in the Library and on the Islands Trust website.
Friday, April 7 @ 7 pm | Gabriola Arts & Heritage Centre | Admission by donation