The stability of foster family placements of unaccompanied refugee children: A one-year prospective study

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Samenvatting

This study examined the stability (or instability) of 29 foster placements of unaccompanied refugee children, including how stability was related, inter alia, to the cultural matching of children and caregivers from the perspectives of the children, foster caregivers, and guardians over a one-year period. Several dimensions of stability were assessed, such as placement stability (continuing versus disrupted placements at T1; the second measurement), stability in placement success, and stability in child and fostering factors (i.e., placement development from the baseline [T0] to T1). From the perspectives of the children, caregivers, and guardians, most placements in which children stayed in the same foster family over time remained relatively stable in terms of child and fostering factors and placement success. According to the caregivers, however, the children’s social-emotional problems showed a significant increase over time. The children’s and caregivers’ appreciation of their cultural similarity tended to fluctuate over time. Notably, the children’s appreciation of cultural similarity in terms of religion decreased significantly. Most of the children in disrupted placements showed improved or stable results for child factors at T1. Moreover, with reference to the findings measured at T0, we observed differences between children who were still living with the same foster families and those who were living elsewhere at T1. From the perspectives of the foster caregivers and guardians, the former fared better than the latter, as indicated by the baseline measurements.
Originele taal-2English
TijdschriftAmerican Journal of Orthopsychiatry
StatusSubmitted - 5-mei-2021

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