A welcome addition to family placement literature. It provides a coherent framework for what works in practice, with clear summaries of areas that social workers should pay close attention to. It provides empirical evidence for what family placement practitioners know from practice that improved support is related to less strain for foster carers and to better parenting skills and so to better placement outcomes.
British Journal of Social Work
This book marks a very welcome new addition to the foster care literature, addressing as it does a challenging yet relatively under-researched area of practice... The book will be of great interest to those involved in foster-care and child welfare more generally and will hopefully have some positive impact on policy and practice in the field.
Child Abuse Review
I found this book to be a thoughtful and comprehensive coverage of the main issues confronting this challenging area of work. This study lays open a reconsideration of service structure and delivery to meet the challenge of decreasing problematic disruptions and improving placement outcomes for young people. The inter-relationship between the quality of the carer and the organizational support is quite clearly demonstrated. I would recommend this book very strongly to all those professional involved in the provision of services to adolescents; it is a clear and well-evidenced study.
Child and Family Social Work
This is one of the few fostering studies that includes in its sample young people placed with foster carers in both local authority and non-governmental fostering agencies. More importantly it is one of the very few outcome studies that involves children looked after by independent fostering providers. The book is very well arranged, clearly written and structured so that its findings and practice relevance are easily accessible. In recent years much research, policy and practice attention has been devoted to the professionalization of foster care and the specialist needs of adolescents being fostered. Services that support foster carers and the children and young people placed with them have been widely examined, and this study makes an important contribution to this body of knowledge. Importantly, what this book also does is provide a thorough and applied critique of the parenting qualities that foster carers need to develop and devote to some of the most troubled young people needing alternative care.
It provides recommendations for policy and practice in the areas of how strain for carers can be reduced; the role foster carers' own children play in the success or failure of a placement; how to contain adolescents; key training and support requirements for foster carers; managing contact; and how foster carers and social workers respond to gender differences. This will be an invaluable book for anyone working in child welfare and child protection.