For American Indian/Alaska Native children in foster care, a Native foster or adoptive family can reduce trauma by allowing the children to continue practicing their culture and traditions. It may also mean the difference between long-term foster care versus permanency through adoption.
Download the American Indian/Alaska Native Factsheet
The Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) is a federal law that governs how a state interacts with Native American children. Because Native American tribes are independent and sovereign nations, there are some differences in how these foster care cases are treated.
Often the tribe’s efforts to pass along their traditions, values, teachings, and culture on to future generations is an important part of decisions made on behalf of these children. Sometimes tribes are hesitant to allow Native children to be adopted by non-Native families, where they are unsure that their traditions and culture will be honored.
Because of this, Utah Foster Care (UFC) actively recruits Native American families to serve as foster parents and urges all foster parents interested in caring for Native children to familiarize themselves with ICWA.
How Can Tribes Help?
- Download a check-list of ways Tribes can help…
- Write a Letter of Support (Here’s a sample in TXT or PDF)
- Draft a Resolution of Support (Here’s a sample in TXT or PDF)
- Download a flier and post in your community centers:
- Sign-up for the TRIBES newsletter (below) to stay in-the-know.