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  • A woman eyes the work of an Indigenous Australian artist at a German museum.

    A woman eyes the work of an Indigenous Australian artist at a German museum. | Photo: EFE

Published 20 April 2019

The initiative, the CMA Reconciliation Project, aims to review policies concerning collaboration with Canada's indigenous communities, as well as create several developmental projects.

The Canadian Museums Association (CMA) announced Tuesday that the government's Museums Assistance Program (MAP) is providing US$1 million in funding, which will be used to showcase the First Nations in cultural institutions throughout the country. 

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The initiative, the CMA Reconciliation Project, aims to review policies concerning collaboration with Canada's Indigenous communities, as well as create several developmental projects, such as workshops, newsletters, reports and online learning tools. 

The project was framed in 2015 after the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which was formed in 2008 by members of the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement, shed light on the many ways the residential school system had failed the Indigenous population. 

The Call to Action 67 of the commission said it was necessary for the government to provide the CMA with funding in order to "undertake, in collaboration with Aboriginal peoples, a national review of museum policies and best practices to determine the level of compliance with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People and to make recommendations."

“Cultural spaces, like our museums and other heritage institutions, play a fundamental role in bringing our communities together by enriching our understanding of our shared history,” Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism, Pablo Rodriguez, said.

Former chief of the Mississaugas of Credit Nation, Carolyn King, says she hopes the project will allow the First Nations people to share their story of loss.

"We're looking to add our story to these buildings. I'm hoping that our story will get told," the elder stated. 

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