Papal visit support for Indigenous communities
Pope Francis is travelling to Canada from July 24 to 29, 2022, where he will visit Alberta, Quebec and Nunavut.
Pope Francis' visit is being organized by the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops. Please consult their official website for information, including the itinerary and registration for in person events: Pope Francis' visit to Canada.
The Government of Canada is providing support to First Nations, Inuit, and Métis communities, including urban and off-reserve organizations, for community-led initiatives related to the July 2022 papal visit and the legacy of residential schools, such as healing activities, events, ceremonies and travel for Survivors.
Mental health supports
Throughout the papal visit trauma-informed mental wellness supports will continue to be available to residential school Survivors, their families, and communities, including Traditional Healers, Elders, and other mental wellness supports. Indigenous mental wellness workers and cultural support providers will also be available at specific papal events.
The Indian Residential Schools Resolution Health Support Program provides access to cultural and emotional support services and professional mental health counselling to eligible Survivors of residential schools and their families: Indian Residential Schools Resolution Health Support Program.
National helplines and other mental wellness services will continue to be available during the papal visit.
- The Hope for Wellness Help Line provides immediate, toll-free telephone and online-chat based support and crisis intervention to all Indigenous Peoples in Canada. This service is available 24/7 in English and French, and upon request in Cree, Ojibway and Inuktitut. Trained counsellors are available by phone at 1-855-242-3310 or by online chat at hopeforwellness.ca.
- The National Residential School Crisis Line provides immediate, culturally grounded emotional support and crisis intervention to Survivors of residential schools and their family members. The toll-free line is open 24/7 at 1-866-925-4419.
- The Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls Crisis Line provides immediate, culturally grounded emotional support and crisis intervention to any person in Canada impacted by the issue of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. The toll-free line is available 24/7 at 1-844-413-6649.
On this page
About the papal visit support
Funding will be provided to First Nations, Inuit, and Métis communities and governments, as well as a limited number of urban Indigenous organizations and organizations serving Indigenous women and 2SLGBTQQIA+ people.
Communities and organizations will be contacted directly.
Funds will flow to First Nation, Inuit and Métis communities and organizations in a flexible way that respects Indigenous communities' right to implement their own trauma-informed and culturally grounded responses to address specific needs identified by communities and their members.
Who this supports
- First Nations communities and organizations, including self-governing and modern Treaty nations
- Inuit communities and organizations
- Métis communities and organizations
- Specific urban and off-reserve Indigenous communities and organizations
- Coordinating and funding events related to the papal visit such as viewing events, gatherings to mark the historic event, events that commemorate Survivors or children who did not return from residential schools
- Cultural activities or initiatives for Survivors, family members, intergenerational survivors and community members such as ceremonies, on-the-land activities, traditional healing, and cultural activities
- Renting or purchasing resources or supplies related to organizing viewings of the papal visit, events or cultural activities such as audio-visual equipment, tents, laptops, food for traditional feasts, traditional medicines and supplies for cultural activities
- Providing honoraria to Elders, traditional healers, cultural practitioners, ceremonialists and knowledge keepers
- Support for health and cultural support workers or other community-based workers
- Language or cultural revitalization initiatives to address the ongoing impact of residential schools, among other purposes
- Improving access to mental health supports, such as hiring a regulated mental health professional (social worker, psychologist) to provide mental health supports to individuals, families or groups, or to provide supports to health and cultural support workers and other front line staff
- Other activities intended to enhance culturally-relevant and safe approaches to the mental wellness of Survivors, family members, intergenerational Survivors, and community members
- Funding for travel and travel-related costs for Survivors, people providing support to Survivors, and intergenerational Survivors to attend papal visit events in person
Reporting requirements for funding
Funding provided to communities and organizations is flowing through existing contribution agreements wherever possible and using existing funding streams, via the Mental Wellness program (First Nations and Inuit Health Branch) or the Urban Programming for Indigenous Peoples (UPIP). Within the amount of the funding allocated for a community or organization, funds can be used to reimburse expenses for eligible activities that have already been incurred this fiscal year. Recipients are encouraged to consider partnering to hold joint activities.
Support provided to communities and organizations will be subject to the same reporting requirements as other Mental Wellness or Urban Programming for Indigenous Peoples funding.
Papal visit event locations
During the papal visit to Canada from July 24 to July 29, 2022, Pope Francis will travel to Alberta, Quebec and Nunavut.
For a complete list of the dates, times and locations of the papal visit to First Nations, Inuit, and Metis communities, please see the papal visit website.
Television and webcast coverage of events
Video feeds of official papal visit events will be made available so television broadcasters can provide coverage. Livestream coverage of official papal events will also be accessible from the papal visit website.
In addition to French, English, American Sign Language and Quebec Sign Language, interpretation of the broadcasted events will be available in 12 Indigenous languages through webcast and interested broadcasters:
- Cree (East)
- Cree (Plains)
For more information please contact your local FNIHB regional office (or First Nations Health Authority in British Columbia): First Nations and Inuit health regional offices.