From Grief and Loss to Empowerment: Creating your Child’s Ethnic Story
Research has shown that children who leave foster care without an ethnic identity develop a system identity which is damaging and life-altering in many negative ways. Adopted children and adults can experience similar fates without intervention from parents and other professionals. This workshop will explore ways in which parents can validate their child’s birth culture and adoptee identity through oral and written stories.
Concepts to explore include:
- Courageous conversations about white power and privilege,
- Acknowledging grief and loss in adoption,
- Understanding African oral traditions and African American writing styles
- Creating life books and other stories as a form of healing
Michelle K. Johnson, M.A., Doctoral Candidate, former President of MN’s Association of Black Social Workers, is a highly energetic goal oriented person who has an optimistic outlook on life. Serving families and children in crisis is her passion. As a cross-culturally adopted adult from foster care, she has a special skill set in anti-racism and diversity work, multi-ethnic families and communities. She is the cofounder of the MN Chapter of the Adopted and Fostered Adults of the African Diaspora, which brings together adult adoptees and fosters care alums from across the global African diaspora, believing that providing connections for and creating space to make visible the adoption and foster community in Black/ African diasporic cultures worldwide will give support to those who otherwise remain isolated in their experiences. She also has been a CASA/Guardian ad Litem Volunteer Coordinator for the State of Minnesota- 4th Judicial District Court for the past 9 years. She trains, retains, supports and celebrates 230+ volunteer child advocates who represents abused and neglected children in Minneapolis Juvenile Court (Hennepin County). http://www.startribune.com/new-challenges-unite-adult-adoptees/126529928/