Jim White holding flag in front of group waiting to begin run/walk

Alvin Dixon Memorial Run/Walk

Put your athletic shoes on and get ready! Join United Church people across the country in a fun run/walk.

  • Date: Official kick-off is June 17, 2022, events can take place any time through July 25, 2022!
  • Time: whenever works best for you!
  • What: a run or walk in your community, you choose the distance and route!
  • Why: to have fun and raise money for the Alvin Dixon Memorial Bursary Fund, supporting Indigenous students entering or continuing post-secondary education or study at religious and spiritual centres
  • How: Organize a run for your Community of Faith or other group, run/walk on your own or with a friend, or simply donate or sponsor a group or person.

5-step plan to organizing your event

  • Get a runner or walker in your community to choose the best running and walking routes for your group.
  • Promote your event in your newsletters and announcements. See below for some plug-and-play resources you can use!
  • Post on your church's website, Facebook page, and your own social media to invite your friends, family, and community.
  • Let us know you're participating by registering online.
  • Get out there and have fun! You can even use your favourite workout tracking app to share your efforts.

Who was Alvin Dixon?


Alvin Dixon

Alvin William Dixon, a respected Heiltsuk First Nation Elder, was born on June 10, 1937. At age 10, Alvin was taken from his family to the Alberni Indian Residential School on Vancouver Island. After surviving years of abuse, he graduated, and then enrolled at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver as one of six First Nations students at the school.

Alvin was a strong activist and held roles with the Native Brotherhood of British Columbia and, especially, with the United Church, beginning as a member of British Columbia Conference staff and supporting the BC Native Ministries Council.

At the time of his death, he was serving as the BC Conference lay representative to the Executive of the General Council (GCE). He served on the Moderator's Advisory Committee and the Theology and Inter-Church Inter-Faith Committee. He was one of the founders of the Native Ministries Consortium and the Native Ministries program at the Vancouver School of Theology. Alvin was the first Indigenous chair (2005‒2014) of the Residential Schools Steering Committee (renamed in 2011 as the Committee of Indigenous Justice and Residential Schools).

Alvin died of cancer on July 20, 2014, in Vancouver. His two sons, two daughters, six grandchildren, two sisters, and brother survive him.

Throughout his life, Alvin quietly worked behind the scenes to improve the lives of First Nations people in many areas, including those involved in the First Nations fishery and First Nations youth. Alvin worked to raise awareness with Canadians about the experiences of Indigenous children in residential schools in his role through the BC Indian Residential Schools Survivors Society.