Shania Twain has narrated For Love, a new documentary about Indigenous children in Canada's foster care system, which is set to debut on Sept. 30 with a private ceremony at the Vancouver Convention Centre.
The film, which is directed by Matt Smiley, was produced by Mary Teegee, and includes the participation of First Nations, Métis and Inuit peoples. It was executive produced by Gitxsan children's rights activist Cindy Blackstock and also features an appearance from former Prime Minister Paul Martin.
Sept. 30 was chosen for For Love's premiere date due to it being the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. It also happens to be Orange Shirt Day, which raises awareness about how residential schools in Canada affected Indigenous peoples.
You can watch the trailer for For Love below:
Shania has been a longtime advocate for children's rights and anti-poverty causes through her Shania Kids Can Foundation. Its program allows schools to apply for funding for underprivileged children, and the foundation then works with them to set up a clubhouse that connects kids with nutritional needs, academic and psychological support and much more.
Indigenous children are overrepresented in Canada's foster care system. According to the federal government, while 7.7 per cent of all children under the age of 14 in Canada are Indigenous, Indigenous children under that age make up more than 52 per cent of children in foster care.
In 2015, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which documented the history and impacts of the residential school system, called on the federal government to reduce the number of Indigenous children in foster and out-of-home care. Activists have said foster care "replaced residential schools."
If you'd like to learn more about the history and histories of Indigenous peoples, the University of Alberta offers a free, 12-lesson, online course called Indigenous Canada. It examines Indigenous creation stories and worldviews, cultures and history, including the residential school system. It also looks at issues faced by Indigenous women and girls, and the way forward through reconciliation, among other topics.
I have spent the past 13 weeks taking the Indigenous Studies course through the faculty of @UANativeStudies at U of A. The weekly discussions we had were nothing short of transformational. Help me support the faculty by donating here: https://t.co/yCInZbwqeFpic.twitter.com/VXACgYfnW3
— dan levy (@danjlevy) November 15, 2020