How Jennifer Podemski blends Jewish and Indigenous generational trauma in her new TV show ‘Little Bird’

Rivka Campbell interviews Jennifer Podemski for a live taping of The CJN podcast Rivkush, held at Holy Blossom Temple on May 28, 2023. (Photo courtesy Michael Fraiman)

During the infamous Sixties Scoop, the Canadian government forcibly relocated tens of thousands of Indigenous children, separating them from their families and placing them in foster homes or adoptive households. Little Bird, a new show by Crave and APTN, which premiered May 26, follows one young woman who was taken from her reserve in Saskatchewan at age five and raised in a Jewish home in Montreal, having her name changed from Bezhig Little Bird to Esther Rosenblum. In her 20s, Bezhig returns to the Prairies to find the family she lost and discover the secrets of her past.

When the idea for Little Bird was pitched to filmmaker Jennifer Podemski, who has First Nations and Jewish heritage, she quickly agreed to take on the project. She joined The CJN podcast Rivkush for an in-depth conversation about the historical realities and lingering trauma that still affect Indigenous Canadians today, as well as the complicit role that some Jewish families played—and what we can do moving forward.

This episode was recorded live at Holy Blossom Temple on May 28, in partnership with the podcast’s sponsor, the Canadian Race Relations Foundation. Read more about the partnership here.


Rivkush is hosted by Rivka Campbell. Michael Fraiman is the editor and prodcer. Our theme music is by Westside Gravy. The show is sponsored by the Canadian Race Relations Foundation and is a member of The CJN Podcast Network. Support the show by subscribing to this podcast or donating to The CJN.