Reframing the Child Welfare Narrative logo

Join Jackie Crow Shoe, enrolled member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa, as she connects with child welfare experts across Indian Country to address the importance of building tribal child welfare programs that are reflective of their community values and culture – reclaiming the narrative from a dominant system to one that reflects Indigenous worldviews and emphasizes responsibilities to children.

Podcast Episodes


Episode 1

Guests: Lauren van Schilfgaarde (Cochiti Pueblo), UCLA Law and
Brett Lee Shelton (Oglala Sioux Tribe), Native American Rights Fund

Learn how the removal of Native children was a means of colonization and forced assimilation and how the current child welfare structure was developed as a response. Lauren van Schilfgaarde and Brett Lee Shelton discuss how tribal child welfare programs can reclaim their systems to reflect their Indigenous worldviews and their responsibilities to children.

Episode 2

Guest: James Vukelich Kaagegaabaw (Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa)

Exploring traditional languages can help create solutions rooted in Indigenous perspectives and wisdom. A leading voice on the interconnectedness of language and culture, James Vukelich shares examples from traditional languages that demonstrate how these deep meanings can empower communities to shape their vision for child welfare based on their values.

Episode 3

Guest: Ethleen Iron Cloud-Two Dogs (Oglala Sioux Tribe)

Learn from respected Elder, Ethleen Iron Cloud-Two Dogs, as she shares her insight on shifting not only the child welfare mindset, but that of the whole community, to see the care and development of children as a sacred and shared responsibility.

Episode 4

Guest: Chief Judge Abby Abinanti (Yurok Tribe)

This episode takes us to Northern California with the Yurok Tribe to learn how they established a justice system reflective of their culture. A visionary in Indian Country, “Judge Abby” Abinanti talks about changing the child welfare profession and courts to serve as part of the community’s extended family, joining the Yurok Tribe on a path to wellness.

Episode 5

Guest: Brett Lee Shelton (Oglala Sioux Tribe), Native American Rights Fund

This episode explores restoring sustainable peacemaking practices. Learn from Brett Lee Shelton about how this community-based cultural practice is evolving across Indian Country to resolve conflicts and improve outcomes for children in a healthy way.

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The Children's Bureau, within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, funds the Capacity Building Center for Tribes. The contents of this website and the resources herein do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Children's Bureau. 

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