Endorsements & Reviews
Engagement | Resilience | Compelling
For Scholars | For
Social Work Programs
A Model for
What is so inspiring about the story of Tikinagan is that this
is a child welfare system guided by well defined values, beliefs
and a vision for children developed by the Nishnawbe Aski peoples.
This is not so much a story of how a First Nations child and
family service agency is protecting First Nations children as
it is about how a First Nations child and family service agency
can act as an empowering agent for a community to reclaim its
responsibility and ability to care for and protect children.
It sets the right example of what community engagement in child
welfare can look like.
The other right example that Tikinagan sets is its own commitment
to learning - it understands achieving the vision set out by
community means that everyone, including the child welfare system
agency, must be prepared to learn and change. By sharing this
story, Tikinagan embodies the value of generosity held by the
Nishnawbe Aski peoples for generations - it is a chance for
all of us to learn from their experience and to celebrate the
resilience and strength of First Nations families and communities.
Executive Director, First Nations Child and Family Caring Society
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of First Nation People
Coming Home provides an accurate historical and current account
of Tikinagan's work in our First Nation communities. It not
only helps bring to light the challenges our First Nation people
have endured in the past, and continue to endure, but it also
illuminates the resilience of our people in continuing to strive
for a better life, for our current and future generations, in
the face of such hardship.
Chief Donny Morris
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Coming Home provides a compelling history of oppression, dislocation
and broken promises, alongside the history of Aboriginal self-sufficiency
and resilience from the perspective of the Elders. Tikinagan
Child and Family Services reflects a growing renaissance within
First Nations that is bringing new vision and hope for the future,
for Aboriginal peoples and Canadian society as a whole.
Executive Director, Child Welfare League of Canada
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These days it is unusual that I read a book about child and
family welfare that so engages me that I put everything else
aside to finish it. It is also rare that I read a child and
family welfare book with information and insights that I've
not encountered before. Coming Home is such a book.
In telling the story of the devastating exposure of the people
of Tikinagan to residential schools and to child protection
services, Coming Home tells a story relevant to First Nation
history across North America and abroad. It does so in an easily
accessible manner with compassion and power.
I think the most original and valuable contribution of Coming
Home is its rich and careful description of the struggles and
triumphs of the people of Tikinagan in creating their own First
Nation Child and Family Services over several decades. This
study provides ample documentation and many insights about the
unique pressures faced when First Nations reclaim responsibility
for the protection and well being of their children and families.
Equally important is the beginning elaboration of a model of
child and family welfare compatible with the people of Tikinagan's
way of living, values and aspirations.
Coming Home will be a useful and appreciated contribution to
any undergraduate or graduate course on child and family welfare
or on issues of diversity and marginalization. The team of researchers
at the Partnerships for Children and Families Project at Wilfrid
Laurier University has invested much effort over the past few
years searching for information about the experiences of First
Nation child and family welfare organizations and the types
of systems they wish to create. Very little information is available
and almost no resource with the grounded detail of this investigation.
I strongly recommend this book to scholars in Canada and elsewhere
interested in these topics. The presentation differs from traditional
academic formats but the product is credible and generative.
Professor and Lyle S. Hallman Chair in Child and Family Welfare,
Faculty of Social Work, Wilfrid Laurier University
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Needed Resource for Child
and Family Service Agencies
The book provides a timely and very important contribution to
the field of child welfare in Canada. The work effectively characterizes
the struggles and the innovative work of the Tikinagan Child
and Family Service agency. It clearly identified the needs of
the First Nations children, families and communities of the
area served by Tikinagan Child and Family Services.
However, it does not only identify problems and needs it, characterizes
the remarkable strengths and resilience of the people and the
communities. The book effectively illustrates the innovative
programming and services that have developed building on the
cultural teachings of the elders relating to children, families
and parenting. It clearly identifies the areas where the culturally
anchored programs and services have been effective in collaborating
with the local communities on addressing difficult social problems.
This book represents a much needed resource for Aboriginal and
non-Aboriginal child and family service agencies across Canada.
There is very little literature available on culturally anchored
and directed programs service delivery models. This book provides
a resource that can be most useful for practitioners and administrators
in developing family friendly programs and services that are
respectful of children, parents, culture and communities.
In addition, this book addresses the issues of providing child
and family services in remote rural and northern communities.
It provides some effective suggestions for engaging and mobilizing
the community resources and cultural anchored practices to provide
supports and resources to children and families.
Professor and Retired Dean,
Faculty of Social Work, University of Manitoba
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