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Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Daughter of a Lost Bird

Daughter of a Lost Bird Trailer from Daughter of a Lost Bird on Vimeo.

Daughter of a Lost Bird

What does blood have to do with identity? Kendra Mylnechuk, an adult Native adoptee, born in 1980 at the cusp of the enactment of the Indian Child Welfare Act, is on a journey to reconnect with her birth family and discover her Lummi heritage.

The film pays particular attention with regard to our diverse heritage as a nation founded on a multitude of Native nations, and specifically delves into the traditions and culture of the Lummi people.  It also examines the current conditions of Lummi and American Indian people today and the Diaspora formed by the adopted community. Most significantly, the film aims to bring about cross-cultural awareness for those families that adopt across cultural lines, to become more tolerant and understanding of the potential problems that arise from cultural assimilation.


More about the Film: Missoulian News Article 

POLSON – It’s a big leap, going from producing a 15-minute short film to making a feature-length one.
But a woman who spent her childhood on the Flathead Indian Reservation started on a path last week that could help her make the jump.
Brooke Swaney is in New Mexico over Memorial Day weekend for the first of a two-stage development program sponsored by Robert Redford’s Sundance Institute. She’s one of four fellows and projects chosen for Sundance’s 2012 NativeLab Fellowship, which provides continuous and direct support to Native American, Native Hawaiian and Alaskan Native filmmakers.
She took her script, with the working title “Circle,” with her.
It’s a major expansion on the 15-minute short she made for her thesis as a graduate student at New York University’s Film School, called “OK Breathe Auralee.”
“Circle” is about the same young Native American woman “who was adopted away from her community,” Swaney told “On Native Ground,” “and her wanting to reconnect with her roots – kind of through a roundabout way of really wanting to have a baby.”
Swaney wrote the feature-length script at the home of her mother, Ellen, who lives near Polson on Flathead Lake. Ellen says it weaves the four directions and four elements – air, earth, water and fire – so important in Native traditions into the story.
“Originally I wanted four different characters in four different parts of the United States,” Swaney says, “but after making the ‘Auralee’ short I realized her story is so big, I have to just tell her story.”
It’s an adoption story that eventually leads Auralee from her home in New York City back to the place – a Montana Indian reservation – where she was born, but never knew.
Getting such a project by an aspiring young filmmaker off the ground, that’s the challenge.
The Sundance fellowship is a big step.
 

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Indian Country is under attack. Native tribes and people are fighting hard for justice. There is need for legal assistance across Indian Country, and NARF is doing as much as we can. With your help, we have fought for 48 years and we continue to fight.

It is hard to understand the extent of the attacks on Indian Country. We are sending a short series of emails this month with a few examples of attacks that are happening across Indian Country and how we are standing firm for justice.

Today, we look at recent effort to undo laws put in place to protect Native American children and families. All children deserve to be raised by loving families and communities. In the 1970s, Congress realized that state agencies and courts were disproportionately removing American Indian and Alaska Native children from their families. Often these devastating removals were due to an inability or unwillingness to understand Native cultures, where family is defined broadly and raising children is a shared responsibility. To stop these destructive practices, Congress passed the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA).

After forty years, ICWA has proven to be largely successful and many states have passed their own ICWAs. This success, however, is now being challenged by large, well-financed opponents who are actively and aggressively seeking to undermine ICWA’s protections for Native children. We are seeing lawsuits across the United States that challenge ICWA’s protections. NARF is working with partners to defend the rights of Native children and families.

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where were you adopted?

where were you adopted?

To Veronica Brown

Veronica, we adult adoptees are thinking of you today and every day. We will be here when you need us. Your journey in the adopted life has begun, nothing can revoke that now, the damage cannot be undone. Be courageous, you have what no adoptee before you has had; a strong group of adult adoptees who know your story, who are behind you and will always be so.

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Membership Application Form

The Network is open to all Indigenous and Foster Care Survivors any time.

The procedure is simple: Just fill out the form HERE.

Source Link: NICWSN Membership

ADOPTION TRUTH

As the single largest unregulated industry in the United States, adoption is viewed as a benevolent action that results in the formation of “forever families.”
The truth is that it is a very lucrative business with a known sales pitch. With profits last estimated at over $1.44 billion dollars a year, mothers who consider adoption for their babies need to be very aware that all of this promotion clouds the facts and only though independent research can they get an accurate account of what life might be like for both them and their child after signing the adoption paperwork.

Dawnland 2018