Residential care in Australia - Association of Children`s Welfare

Residential out-of-home care in
Australia: the story so far...
Jenna Bollinger and Stephanie Scott-Smith
[email protected]
[email protected]
Residential care in Australia
The vast majority of young people in OOHC live in foster
care (41%) or kinship care (47%) (AIHW, 2013).
Approximately 5.2% of young people in OOHC end up in
Residential Care (AIHW, 2013).
Pathways into residential care
Case Study AB and CD
What we know about residential care in
Residential Care is often viewed as a last resort.
Research suggests that young people in residential care tend
to have the most negative outcomes.
What is about residential care that leads to more negative
Are there benefits of a residential care setting VS foster care
What does the Australian research say?
The presumption that residential care produces negative
outcomes may exacerbate any potential negative
outcomes for the young person.
Case study: EF and GH
Predictors of long-term disadvantage for
young people in residential care
Unresolved anger towards family members, workers or the system;
Unsuitable and unstable placements and multiple changes of carers and workers;
Lack of long-term goals (e.g., education, vocation and living arrangements);
Lack of sufficient income;
Contact with the juvenile justice system and imprisonment;
Lack of preparation for leaving; and
Lack of later contact with the care system.
Placement disruption and the importance of
placement stability.
Case study IJ.
Predictors of long-term success for young
people in residential care
A positive experience of time in care – stability and consistency;
The development of belief in self and resilience;
The presence of mentors, advocates, previous carers and workers;
After-care support workers;
Family contact.
What we need to know about residential
care in Australia
Residential care VS therapeutic residential care
Therapeutic residential care has better outcomes
Foster care / Kinship care VS residential care with
similarly complex young people?
Post care support / follow-up is essential
Residential care in Australia
Young People in residential care have complex and diverse
Therapeutic Residential Care produces better outcomes than
residential care
Residential care can be the best option to met the needs of
young people
There’s always room for improvement
A final case study
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