In this two-part course, participants will learn about the historical trauma faced by Native American people in the U.S.; how this history continues to impact Native American children and families; and how the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) was passed as a remedial act intended to address this historical trauma.

This course is conducted in two parts: Part One is an online foundational course discussing the historical trauma faced by Native American people in the U.S., and Part Two is a classroom-based, skill-building course.

By the end of the full course, successful participants will be able to:

  • Describe the historical basis and purpose of the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA)
  • Recognize the historical trauma experienced by Indian/Native American people and the associated distrust and implications for helping relationships, particularly engagement with Indian/Native American families
  • Identify trauma-informed interventions when working with Indian/Native American children, youth, families and communities
  • Recognize the concept of tribal sovereignty and the relationship between tribal government and the US government
  • Identify local tribes and local best practices for connecting with tribal representatives
  • Recognize the necessity and benefits of culturally responsive, participatory, joint case planning with Native American families and tribal representatives, including assessment, mental health services and permanency options for children, youth and non-minor dependent youth
  • Recognize tribal customary adoption and guardianship as concurrent permanency planning options for Native American children and youth
  • Describe the role of the qualified expert witness as it relates to the ICWA.

Participants will build knowledge and skill in application of the various provisions of the ICWA within the context of the California juvenile dependency process.

Course Code