Colonization had a unique impact on Indigenous mothers.  As discussed earlier, prior to colonization, Indigenous women were seen to have a sacred role as the givers of life and as mothers.  Family was an intrinsic element to Indigenous life and mothers were held in esteem and revered in their communities.

Residential schools, as well as foster homes, have taken Indigenous children out of their homes and left Indigenous mothers childless.  To understand the magnitude of loss that Indigenous mothers have endured, it becomes necessary to hear their voices which Robertson (2005) eloquently brings to life through the ‘Stories from the Aboriginal Women of the Yarning Circle: When Cultures Collide.’  The yarning circle brings Indigenous women together “to raise critical discussions where they share their insight into the issues that have been prevalent in the lives of many of their women, who have had their children removed and who have been denied their right to be mothers” (Robertson, 2005, p.35).

The Indigenous identity of these women served as the justification for questions to be raised about their ability to raise children. Robertson (2005) explains that “all white women had the inherent capacity and right to become mothers, this privilege was denied to Aboriginal women” (p.39).  Women characterized having their child taken by the government as ‘theft’ and the stories of removal are nothing less than traumatic (Robertson, 2005).

The concern of the frequency of Indigenous children being removed from the home continues.

The women of the Yarning circle explain: People seem to talk without interest about the number of our kids that were taken away and the number of our children that continue to be taken by governments and their representatives even today” (Robertson, 2005, p. 41).

The Yarning circle expresses that “we [Indigenous women] need to reflect on what has happened to our families and our parents whose children were forcibly taken away and we need to remember that they often did so because of sentiments that served a social purpose for others at the time” (Robertson, 2005, p. 41).

One woman of the Yarning circle exposes the challenge at hand for Indigenous mothers: 
It is every woman’s right to be a mother if that is what they choose and I think that is’ the challenge before us, to protect our rights to be mothers, to be sisters, to be who and what we want to be, whatever that may be. I think of the common factors that may have justified the removal of our children and I can’t think of anything other than prejudice and the statement that ‘it is in the best interest of the children’.  How can it be in their best interest, when there was nothing wrong in the way they were loved, in the way they were cared for? I am tired of hearing our women saying the same thing over and over: Why can’t I be a mother? Why can’t I be a mother? (Robertson, 2005, p. 43)

Indigenous mothers continued to be confronted with threats and concerns that their children will be taken away from them and out of their homes.  They experience more surveillance by the government because of their Indigenous identity and the legacy and continued experiences of colonization.  As practitioners, it is integral that we reflect and understand historical and current interactions between Indigenous mothers and social workers and their larger context.