Connection to concrete resources provides additional opportunities for youth to gain the life skills necessary to navigate adulthood. The experience of trauma in childhood threatens and disrupts healthy development. Tribal child welfare programs and individual caseworkers who are aware of the impacts of adverse childhood experiences are better equipped to facilitate healthy healing and development and meaningful connections. Supporting Indigenous youth through their healing journeys correlates with positive outcomes as they become adolescents transitioning out of foster care. One way to support Indigenous youth through their foster care journey is by ensuring policies and practices are in place that focus on strengthening existing connections while building missing connections capable of supporting youth once their involvement with the foster care system has ended.

Author: Center for Tribes
Date: March 2023