Daughter of a Lost Bird


May 19, 2021May 27, 2021
9:00 AM11:59 PM /
New York
Watch the film at your own pace May 19-27 on our film streaming platform
May 26, 2021
8:30 PM /
New York
RSVP using the "take part" button below to join the live Q&A with filmmaker Brooke Pepion Swaney, film participant Kendra Mylenchuk Potter + Terry Cross, NICWA Founder, moderated by Matika Wilbur & Adrienne Keene from podcast “All My Relations”.
QA Session with the Filmmaker

Kendra Mylnechuk Potter was adopted into a white family and raised with no knowledge of her Native parentage. Serving as both investigator and witness, this beautifully personal film documents Kendra on her journey as a new mother to discover her Native identity. Upon finding her birth mother April, who is also a Native adoptee, Kendra returns to her Lummi homelands in Washington State, and uncovers a wealth of emotional and spiritual beauty and pain. The film also serves an entry point into a more complicated national issue – intentional government actions to erase an entire culture, including the 1958 Indian Adoption Project, which removed Native children from their families and placed them in white homes in an effort to “kill the Indian and save the man.” This poignant story provides living proof that history is not only the past, but the present too.

“I identified as white. This strange confusion of white guilt, and native anger. Where does it sit in me? And how do I sit with both of those things?” - Kendra Mylnechuk Potter, film participant, Daughter of a Lost Bird

“This story we have been telling for seven years can't be wrapped up in a neat bow, because it's such a complex experience to be Native in this country. And sometimes painful, but also beautiful, and powerful, and a million other things.” - Brooke Pepion Swaney, director, Daughter of a Lost Bird 

- Official Selection, HotDocs 2021

Accessibility: Closed-captioning available in English.


Watch at your own pace anytime between May 19 - 27, or join us and watch-along before the live Q&A

Wednesday, May 26
7:15 PM EDT / 4:15 PM PDT – Start film
8:30 PM EDT / 5:30 PM PDT – Join us for a live Q&A. Register here!



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Brooke Pepion Swaney, Director and Kendra Mylnechuk Potter, Jeri Rafter, Producers
Country of Production: 
United States
English (Closed-captioning available in English.)
Filmmaker Bio(s): 
Brooke Pepion Swaney

This film is Brooke's first feature documentary. Most recently and notably she made the Blacklist's Inaugural Indigenous List with TINDER ON THE REZ along with her co-writer Angela Tucker. She also produced BELLA VISTA (Rotterdam), SIXTY FOUR FLOOD (PBS & PBS Digital) and the podcast ALL MY RELATIONS with Matika Wilbur and Dr. Adrienne Keene. In 2019, she was selected to participate as a NATIVe Fellow at the European Film Market/Berlinale. She holds an MFA in Film from NYU. Brooke is an enrolled member of the Blackfeet Nation and a descendent of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes.

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