What makes a good foster carer?: the views of children and young people with an out-of-home care experience

Daly, Wayne Peter (2012) What makes a good foster carer?: the views of children and young people with an out-of-home care experience. PhD thesis, James Cook University.

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Abstract

In Australia, 94% of children and young people separated from their families live in home based care. It is vital that carers recruited are people who are able to best meet their needs. Children and young people who have an out-of-home care experience form their own unique view of what makes a good foster carer. They can be acknowledged as experts of their own lived reality. Through small group and individual interviews, creative art expression and narrative tools, twenty participants from eight to twenty-two years of age have given their views on what qualities and characteristics should be looked for in foster carers.

This analysis involved the creative use of mind mapping to collate a total of 390 contributions categorizing aspects of a 'good foster carer' into clusters around foster carer skills, knowledge, qualities, values, and capacity and aligning these with the four fundamental children's rights as identified by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. Findings point to the identification of qualities in a carer which have been acquired through family upbringing and life experience producing a person who is a welcomer, an encourager, a listener, a believer, a respectful friend, and a supporter. This research has affirmed the capacity of children and young people to be potential co-creators in transforming the care system so that it best meets their needs.

The critical role for child protection practitioners, managers, carers and policy makers in their quest to improve the quality of care for separated children and young people, is to ensure that opportunities are made available to hear their voice and experience and in so doing create pathways for them to have an influence.

Item ID: 39448
Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: child protection; child safety; children; children's rights; foster care; foster carers; foster children; fostering; out-of-home care; participation; young people; youth
Additional Information:

Publications arising from this thesis are available from the Related URLs field. The publications are:

Daly, Wayne, McPherson, Colin, and Reck, Lucinda (2004) SPLAT: a model of young people's participation that moves beyond the rhetoric to empowerment. Children Australia, 29 (4). pp. 20-26.

Daly, Wayne (2005) Children and young people's participation: from having a say to having influence. In: Proceedings of the CROCCS 2005 Conference. From: CROCCS 2005 Conference, 5-7 August 2005, Mackay, QLD, Australia.

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Date Deposited: 16 Jul 2015 04:18
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1607 Social Work > 160702 Counselling, Welfare and Community Services @ 100%
SEO Codes: 94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9401 Community Service (excl. Work) > 940105 Childrens/Youth Services and Childcare @ 100%
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