Raising the African Nova Scotian flag on African Heritage Month
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February 12, 2024
Arborstone residents and team members join in unity to display the African Nova Scotian flag

As we celebrate Black History Month through participation in events and festivities in the community, it is most important to consider how we can make meaningful cultural change.

Unpacking the legacy of colonialism and enslavement in Canada can be an uncomfortable learning journey. Still, it is through cultural humility that we will collectively build a culture of acceptance, belonging and anti-racism. 

At Arborstone Enhanced Care healthcare professionals, management, frontline workers, and residents came together as a collective to proudly raise the African Nova Scotian Flag.

When asked what the flag raising meant to her, Arborstone resident responded, “I was very honoured to be able to lift the flag as I am the only resident of my African heritage at Arborstone Enhanced Care. I was proud to be part of it.” – Susan Mills Downey  

As an organization, Shannex strives to create culturally safe places to work and live and are committed to establishing and cultivating a workplace that reflects the diversity of our Great People -and the communities in which we operate.  

Read more about Black History Month


Designed by Nova Scotian artist Wendie L. Wilson, the flag features colours and symbols of significance to members of the African Nova Scotian community 

About the African Nova Scotian Flag

💧 Wilson’s version incorporates a wave, representing the ocean and her ancestors’ journey through the Middle Passage.

დ The design in the middle of the flag is Wilson’s stylized adaptation of Sankofa, an ancient Adinkra symbol conceived in West Africa, which signifies the importance of bringing past knowledge to the present

🎨 Each colour on the flag symbolizes something different; red for blood and sacrifice, gold for cultural richness, green for fertility and growth, and black for the people. 

💙 Half of a heart with a yin and yang symbol, representing “heartbreak balanced with awareness.”

⌒ The image is encompassed within an incomplete circle, representing those things absent but yet to come.

Learn about the creation of the African Nova Scotian Flag:
New official African Nova Scotian flag looking to connect past, present and future | CBC News

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