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Knowing Who You Are:  A State and Tribal Partnership in Alaska

During the Tribal State Collaboration Group (TSCG) meetings in 2008, the State of Alaska’s Office of Children’s Services (OCS), Tribal partners, and Tribal organizations committed to train all State and Tribal child welfare workers under the same process called Knowing Who You Are (KWYA).  TSCG recognized that a component of helping youth in care succeed was for youth to be able to develop and maintain a healthy racial and ethnic identity. 


The KWYA curriculum, originally designed by Casey Family Programs (CFP), is a model used in many states. CFP supported Alaska in creating a diverse team of facilitators and certifiers in order to build the self-sustained program it is today.  CFP retired the KWYA curriculum at the end of 2015 and has graciously allowed Alaska to continue using KWYA which also provided Alaska’s Steering Committee with the opportunity to make Alaska-specific adaptations to the curriculum. 

KWYA provides a framework for participants to identify and explore racial and ethnic identity and to understand how one’s race and ethnicity impacts both personal and professional interactions. The 3-part process includes participating in a Pre-Workshop Teleconference (about 1 hour), completing the Participant Handbook (about 2-3 hours), and attending and participating in the 2-day in-person workshop. KWYA is open to State and Tribal child welfare workers, child advocates, foster parents, juvenile justice staff, teachers and other educators, law enforcement, service providers, and other community partners.

For information on a workshop near you, please visit:

If you would like to sign up for a KWYA workshop, please contact:

Lisa Tanga
Project Coordinator
Child Welfare Academy

Alternate contact:

Casey M. Groat
Statewide ICWA Coordinator
Office of Children’s Services
State of Alaska
323 East 4th Avenue
Anchorage, AK 99501