Who We Are

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About US

Tasiutigiit is a non-profit organization that offers support and community for families of adopted and fostered Indigenous Children. Given the overrepresentation of Indigenous children in the child welfare system, there is a need for cultural support for inter-cultural families raising them. Tasiutigiit does not condone the removal of Indigenous children from their communities, but seeks to offer services to children and families where this has already occurred. The association seeks to educate foster and adoptive parents about historical and ongoing colonial violence and intergenerational trauma, while providing their children access to positive role models from their communities of origin who can help support them to access their culture and strengthen their Indigenous identity.

Vision

First Nations, Métis, and Inuit children and youth living in cross-cultural homes are healthy, happy, resilient, and thriving as individuals and as members of their families (including both non-Indigenous and Indigenous extended families whenever possible) and have been given the tools and opportunities to thrive as members of the diverse communities in which they choose to belong.

Guiding Principles

We believe that Indigenous children/youth living in cross-cultural homes have a right to connection and belonging with their people and culture: they should be given opportunities to learn about their culture, have relationships with other Indigenous persons, and to be supported by their families in their efforts to do so. 

We are therefore guided in our work by the following principles: 

  • We endorse Article 30 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Children: an Indigenous child shall not be denied the right, in community with other members of their group, to enjoy their own culture.
  • Although we do not promote the removal of children from Indigenous communities, we do promote the rights of Indigenous children living in cross-cultural homes and of their adoptive or foster parent(s) to have access to programs that nurture cultural connections and belonging.
  • We support the inclusion and participation of Indigenous and non-Indigenous persons in the work of the organization.
  • We strive to establish collaborative partnership between Indigenous and non-Indigenous persons through open and honest communication, with a focus on building mutual respect, trust and understanding.
  • Indigenous individuals know the most culturally appropriate and effective way to build cultural knowledge and connections. We therefore strive to have a membership base that includes Indigenous families and individuals.
  • Indigenous cultures are valued. We strive to create programs that respect diverse Indigenous cultures and integrate Indigenous teachings and knowledge. Our youth animation team is comprised of Indigenous persons, with a majority being Inuit to reflect the membership base of the Association.
  • The inclusion of Indigenous persons on the Advisory Board is essential. Their knowledge informs and shapes our programs. Their participation in all Board meetings is written into our Constitution. Decision-making by consensus is the goal.
  • We acknowledge the past: we strive to provide our non-Indigenous adoptive and foster parents with the support and knowledge required to understand the present-day impact of inter-generational trauma in Indigenous communities. 
  • We wish to be partners in the ongoing process of Reconciliation: we strive to have mutually respectful relationships with the organizations representing the communities from which our children have come and to welcome their input in program development.
  • All Indigenous children in cross-cultural homes should have the opportunity to participate in programs of the association. We therefore strive to identify, recruit and retain all Indigenous children in cross-cultural homes in the greater Montreal area. 
  • Programs are child- and youth-focused, and are responsive to youth voice. Indigenous models of building life skills are incorporated into our programming. The development of mastery, belonging, generosity and autonomy (the Circle of Courage model) are the foundations of our programming.
  • Flexibility is crucial to success. We recognize that we don’t have all the answers. By listening closely to the people who participate in our program, we continually adapt, innovate and improve so we most effectively meet their needs.
  • We recognize that families and children/youth’s needs change during the lifespan of the child and that some families will go through periods of inactivity with the Association. Long-term commitment is a must: we will continue outreach to inactive families until the child reaches majority.
  • Organizational integrity is vital. We operate a nimble, efficient and streamlined organization. We endeavour to devote nearly all of our revenues to direct programs delivery.