Kairos Blanket Exercise

This participatory workshop helps participants to understand how colonization of the land we now know as British Columbia and Canada has impacted the people who lived here long before settlers arrived. Through this exercise you will explore the nation-to-nation relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples in Canada, how this relationship has been damaged over the years, and how we all can work toward reconciliation.

In 1996, in response to Canada’s Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples (RCAP), the Aboriginal Rights Coalition worked with Indigenous elders and teachers to develop an interactive way of learning the history most Canadians are never taught.

The KAIROS Blanket Exercise was the result; it has since been offered thousands of times and the sixth edition was released in 2020. Participants learn about European colonization of Turtle Island (North America), the accompanying dispossession of Indigenous peoples (reflected by the steady removal of blankets upon which participants stand) and Indigenous resistance and efforts to reclaim land and rights.

Participants are drawn into the experience by engaging on an emotional and intellectual level, the Blanket Exercise effectively educates and increases empathy. Participants also have the opportunity to debrief and discuss the experience as a group. This often takes the form of a talking circle.

With this knowledge of our shared history, we can begin to work together with mutual respect toward reconciliation.

For information on hosting a Kairos Blanket Exercise on the Sunshine Coast or to find out when the next exercise will be held contact: John or Nancy Denham at 604-885-7373 or by email at denham4951@gmail.com