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Aski Awasis / Children of the Earth

Language:
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian;
Status: In Print
Authentic Canadian Content
Authentic Indigenous Text

The adoption of Aboriginal children into non-Aboriginal families has a long and contentious history in Canada. Life stories told by First Nations people reveal that the adoption experience has been far from positive for these communities and has, in fact, been an integral aspect of colonization. In an effort to decolonize adoption practices, the Yellowhead Tribal Services Agency (YTSA) in Alberta has integrated customary First Peoples’ adoption practices with provincial adoption laws and regulations. Introducing this unique agency, the authors outline the history of First Nations adoptions and, through an interview with a YTSA Elder, describe the adoption ceremonies offered at YTSA. Themes that emerged from interviews with adoptive parents and youth who have been adopted through this new integrated practice are also explored, and important recommendations for policy and practice in First Nations adoption are offered.