All training offered through the Tribal Training and Certification Partnership has been developed in collaboration with tribes and the Minnesota ICWA Advisory Council. We affirm American Indian, Alaska Native, and all other Indigenous Nations’ inherent right to self-govern and to identify what is in the best interest of their communities. We believe the preservation of culture and the family comes from the strength of Tribal communities. Therefore, we remain Tribally-guided.

The TTCP provides education and training to new and ongoing child welfare professionals across the state on foundational issues relating to the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), the Minnesota Indian Family Preservation Act (MIFPA), worldview and engagement with American Indian families and tribes. The TTCP offers advanced training for child welfare workers, supervisors, and counties to develop a deeper understanding of working with American Indian Families and tribal nations.

Independent from the ICWA/MIFPA training collaboration, the TTCP provides child welfare training specifically designed for tribal child welfare agencies. For further information

ICWA Foundation Training

Understanding and Implementing the Indian Child Welfare Act and the Minnesota Indian Family Preservation Act: Best Practice for Working with American Indian Families and Tribes

This two-day foundational training is for new child welfare workers in Minnesota. It covers entry-level topics child welfare workers need in order to understand federal and state laws that govern working with American Indian families. Along with providing information about the laws themselves, this training focuses on the why of the ICWA and MIFPA, and how social workers can have a real impact in improving the lives of families affected by these laws. Topics include historical and cultural factors, Minnesota history, Minnesota tribal nations, the impact of historical trauma as it relates to child welfare, resilience and strength of tribal nations and people, and specific requirements of the ICWA and MIFPA.

Bridging our Understanding: American Indian Family Preservation

In conjunction with the 11 tribes in Minnesota, Bridging Our Understanding: American Indian Family Preservation was developed as an advanced level training for child welfare workers and supervisors who work with American Indian families. Child welfare workers learn about the relational worldview and cultural practices of American Indian Tribes in Minnesota, and are given the opportunity to reconcile county practice methods with those of the tribes.

Tribal Child Welfare and Other Training

The Tribal Training and Certification Partnership provides training to tribal nations and offers training to other agencies involved in the child welfare system. In recognition of tribal nation sovereignty to exercise jurisdiction over child welfare through tribal codes the TTCP tailors child welfare training to cultural practice models. More information can be found at

Questions to Consider

When you consider attending this training, consider the following questions:

  • How is your county agency handling ICWA cases differently from non-ICWA cases?
  • Do you feel knowledgeable and comfortable handling ICWA and MIFPA cases?
  • Is your county agency complying with the requirements of ICWA and MIFPA?
  • What are your agency’s challenges in fully complying with ICWA and MIFPA?
  • Do you know how to conduct Inquiry and Notice?
  • At what point is the tribe being notified and is notification compliant with MIFPA?
  • Is notice provided appropriately (within parameters of ICWA/MIFPA)?
  • Do you share information and collaborate closely with tribal nations?
  • Do you know what active efforts are, and how to document active efforts for legal requirements in court?
  • Is your county engaging tribes in assessment, case planning, services, and placement?
  • Is there testimony from a qualified expert witness in ICWA placement cases?
  • Is the court making a finding that removal was necessary to prevent imminent physical damage or harm to the child when he/she is removed from the home?
  • At what point (and how often) are courts making active efforts findings?
  • Are applying placement preferences outlined in ICWA?
  • Do you feel comfortable understanding and working with Native American families?

These are some of the questions that are answered in our training, to help counties understand how to work with American Indian families, tribal nations, and meet the parameters of the laws.