Community members of the Centre for Learning Alternatives have banded together to create a large banner honouring the remains of the 215 children found at the site of the former Kamloops Residential School.

The banner is hanging on the fence near John Mcinnis Secondary School, it reads “Every Child Matters” and is decorated with 215 pictures of Moccasins.

Some of the children wrote messages on the tongue of the shoe, and one of the moccasins was even decorated with 215 little hearts on the side.

John Giannisis, Community School Coordinator at the Centre for Learning Alternatives organized the project with Colleague, Chelsea Buxton.

“I think reconciliation is part of acknowledging and understanding some of the atrocities of the past such as genocide. I think having respectful and truthful conversations with our students is very important as well,” explained Giannisis.

He says that he and his colleagues at the school were inspired to do this project as a way to open up the conversation about Canada’s history.

“Sometimes you hear mixed stuff about it through media and through social media so it’s a good way for teachers to sit down and have honest discussions about it.”

The project was created by students in 8 different classes, along with Distant Learning and homeschooled students.

Currently, there are a few Kamloops Residential School memorials, including the one that initially sat in front of City Hall, but was moved to Exploration Place where it will remain until next month.