Department of Educational Psychology



Emily A. Waterman

Date of this Version



Published in Journal of Child and Adolescent Trauma 2023



Copyright © 2023 by the Authors, under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG. Used by permission.


The current paper describes rates of recent (past six months) adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and examines the association of ACEs with cultural connection and depressive symptoms among Indigenous children aged 10 to 14 (N = 177; mean age = 11.8; 48.3% boys; 44.3% girls; 7.4% another gender identity). Children completed baseline surveys as part of a larger evaluation of a culturally grounded, strengths-focused, family-based program to prevent ACEs. Surveys included an inclusive measure of ACEs developed for the current study, an adapted measure of connection to culture, and the Children’s Depression Screener. Results for ACEs indicated that 18.6% of Indigenous children reported none, 37.2% reported one to three, and 44.2% reported four or more in the past six months. Importantly, children who reported no ACEs reported greater cultural connection than children who reported one to three ACEs. Depressive symptoms were higher among children who reported one to three and four or more ACEs compared to children who reported no ACEs.