American Indian & Alaska Native Grandfamilies: Helping Children Thrive Through Connection to Family and Cultural Identity
Both inside and outside the foster care system, American Indian and Alaska Native children are more likely to live in grandfamilies—families in which grandparents, other adult family members or close family friends are raising children with no parents in the home—than any other racial or ethnic group.
Over the last few decades, drug epidemics, natural disasters and other tragedies have both created grandfamilies and challenged existing ones. The COVID-19 pandemic is the latest crisis to have elevated the needs of these families, and in particular the needs of American Indian and Alaska Native families, who are being disproportionally impacted by the pandemic. The rates of infection and death are staggering. For example, as of early May 2020 in the Navajo Nation, the mortality and infection rates are higher than the vast majority of states.
African American Grandfamilies: Helping Children Thrive Through Connection to Family and Culture
Both inside and outside the child welfare system, the probability that African American children will live in grandfamilies is more than double that of the overall population, with one in five African American children living in grandfamilies at some point during their childhood.
Over the last few decades, drug epidemics, hurricanes and other tragedies have both created African American grandfamilies and challenged existing ones. The COVID-19 pandemic is the latest such crisis. As of mid-May 2020, African Americans in almost every state collecting racial data have higher rates of infection and death from COVID-19 than whites or Latinos. Despite these most fundamental threats to health and mortality, African Americans retain their commitment and cultural pride in caring for extended family.
Latino Grandfamilies: Helping Children Thrive Through Connection to Culture and Family
During the past several decades, political unrest, economic conditions, U.S. intervention, wars, environmental disasters, and violence in Latin American countries have propelled millions of individuals to seek a more secure life for themselves and their families in the United States. The arrival of immigrants and their U.S. born children has been a major component of Latino population growth and diversity. Culturally appropriate services are needed to support Latino families as they navigate kinship care placements, which appeal to the family system fundamental to Latino culture.