Skip to main content
Graphic for Quaker Voices for Truth, Healing, and Justice

FCNL’s April Quaker Changemaker Event will feature a conversation about the trauma inflicted by Indian Boarding Schools and how it has affected Native communities over generations. We are grappling with the legacy of Quakers who supported the system by operating 30 such schools and working to make amends.

At March 2024’s Spring Lobby Weekend, hundreds of young people from across the country gathered with FCNL to lobby for the Truth and Healing Commission on Indian Boarding School Policies Act.

Living out our testimony calls for a moral reckoning of our past harm. This event will feature a conversation with Quaker activists Buffy Curtis and Liseli Haines on the Truth and Healing Commission, and how non-indigenous Quakers approach truth and healing with Native American advocates. How has faith led Quakers to act on this issue, what have they experienced and learned along the way, and how can we avoid the mistakes of the past in our current advocacy?


Buffy Curtis and Liseli Haines
Buffy Curtis (L) and Liseli Haines (R)
Buffy Curtis (L) and Liseli Haines (R)

Buffy Curtis and Liseli Haines, life partners and members of Mohawk Valley Friends Meeting, New York Yearly Meeting (Quakers), began their collaboration nearly 20 years ago. Their mutual call to navigate the waterways led them to help organize and paddle in the Two Row Wampum Renewal Campaign of 2013, from Albany to Manhattan. This experience was the beginning of their ally work with Native Americans, specifically the Haudenosaunee Confederacy. Threading their way through the maze of White Privilege, (de)colonization and Manifest Destiny, they discovered a passion for leading workshops on the Doctrine of Discovery, mostly to “settler” Americans.

Their six-year tenure as Co-Clerks of the Indigenous Affairs committee of the yearly meeting brought many opportunities to continue this work directly with Friends nationwide. Their current participation with Quaker Indian Boarding Schools (QIBS) research group is bringing forth new information and important historical data regarding Quakers’ actions and deep involvement in the Boarding School policies. Carrying forth this knowledge, the work of apology and reparations are also a part of this ongoing work.

Moderator: Alicia McBride

Alicia McBride

Alicia McBride leads FCNL’s work to nurture, expand, and deepen relationships with Friends across the United States. She also works to ensure that everyone engaged with the organization understands the spiritual basis of FCNL’s advocacy. She oversees FCNL events at the Quaker Welcome Center as well as Annual Meeting and the Quaker Public Policy Institute.