Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Social Work


School of Social Work

First Reader/Committee Chair

Dr. Caroline Lim


This study explored Indigenous women’s perspectives about and applications of Traditional healing practices. As Indigenous women experience a disproportionate amount of trauma compared to other populations, this study sought to understand the preferred methods of healing among Indigenous women. Taking a qualitative approach, this study involved semi-structed interviews with five Indigenous women in California (N=5). Results from thematic analysis yielded five different themes: 1) Indigenous women use a variety of Traditional ceremonies and practices for healing, 2) Loss and grief are some of the motivational factors for Indigenous women to pursue healing through Traditional means, 3) Collective healing is important to Indigenous women, 4) Indigenous women sometimes use Western healing practices alongside their preferred Traditional healing methods, 5) Traditional healing ceremonies are passed on generationally. The implications of these findings for theory, research, and social work practice are discussed.

Keywords: Indigenous women, Traditional healing practices, qualitative research, thematic analysis, social work practice

Included in

Social Work Commons