Aboriginal Youth

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Children and youth are constantly being forced to overcome difficult situations that both build up their personality, courage, and self-identity. Identity plays a very important role in a person's life, as we are constantly trying to figure out who we are and where we fit in. Steffler (2008) states that secondary school is a major site of identity struggle that is faced by not only Aboriginal youth, but youth of all ethnicities. However, Aboriginal youth are simultaneously facing other factors related to their traditions, values and ways of life. They often feel disconnected from the curriculum and the school environment, and also feel uneasy about ‘leaving behind’ relatives and peers by achieving and education past elementary school (Steffler, 2008). Due to these feelings, Aboriginal males tend to have higher rates of incarceration and suicide, and females, in their teen years, give birth to children at six times the rate of teenagers in the general population (Steffler, 2008). Through this time, many teenagers are asking themselves: who am I, and who do I want to be? They are also facing stereotypes and racism that influence their identity and the way they behave. Intergenerational relations,…show more content…
This being said while it may be easier for a child of Aboriginal decent to simply attend a school in their community, they will not receive the same equal education as they would attending a Western school. This means that students are being forced to choose between culture and education in order to remain on equal paths as those brought up in the ‘white’ society. Children, from such a young age are finding it very difficult to connect with their own beliefs as it is but with the added stress of cultural obligations and community involvement, Aboriginal youth feel this anxiety even more than most youth of

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