The Importance of Reclaiming Identity for Indigenous Families
Reclaiming and re-establishing who we are is key to Indigenous young people’s healing, longevity, and livelihoods. Indigenous scholar Monica Tsethlikai, Ph.D., says, “The more we return to who we are, by learning our languages and our cultural ways of being, the more we see positive educational outcomes and better mental health.” The connection to traditional ways of life becomes a path toward healing, specifically in younger generations. Relearning languages, powwow, ceremony, land-based practices, how families pray, and more are all essential in helping work through the trauma that has been inflicted on Indigenous families for generations due to colonization.
This piece was written by Andrea Landry, a member of the Pays Plat First Nation and part of the Anishinaabe Nation (Ojibway).