Kinship care and grandparent kinship carers messages from research

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Kinship Care and Grandparent Kinship Carers: messages from research. Presentation fro the Children in Wales Grandparent & Kinship Carers Conference held in Cardiff March 31st 2011

Text of Kinship care and grandparent kinship carers messages from research

  • 1. Kinship Care & grandparent kinship carers: messages from research1

2. Who has been brought up in kinship care?Morgan Freeman Oprah WinfreyBarack ObamaPierce BrosnanTammy Wynette Al Pacino my cousin 2 3. Aims of my presentation1. To highlight key research findings2. To discuss the impact on grandparents of being a 24/7 kinship carer3. To examine what services help?4. To argue that the governments approach to supporting kinship care is indicative of its take on Big Society3 4. Section One Kinship Care-A Care-multiplicity of arrangements Fostered by family or friend Special guardianship Residence order Family network support Informal kinship care-no known to LAS care-4 5. Recent changes-CYPA changes-2008 & kinship care The restriction on the local authority providing financial assistance only in exceptional circumstances (CYPA, 1989, S 17) has been removed The rights of relatives to apply for a RO or SGO are extended without needing the courts permission 5 6. Managing care proceedings and new guidance The Court protocol for managing careproceedings, known as the Public Law Outline(2008) to local authorities requires family andfriends care options to be explored beforecare proceedings are started. Statutory guidance for family and friendsEngland published in March 2010. Wales andother UK countries to produce their own.6 7. CLA in Wales by placementyear ending 31 March 2010 (5,160)4%4% 4% 9% 16% 63% Non relative foster placement FF foster placement Placed with own parents or other with parental responsilbility Childrens Homes Placed for Adoption Other7 8. Who are the carers? N=3016141210 great grandparent grandparent8 aunt/uncle6friend of family4208 9. Key Issues for kinship carers Emotional and relationship costs Financial costs Physical costs for older kinship carers Managing contact with birth parents Worrying about the future9 10. Reasons children in kinship care20181614Substance misuse12Neglect/physicalabuse10Death of parent8Mental health6 parents42N=300 10 11. KEY THEMES for young people in kinship care (n=20)20151050 FeelingsFeelings Change ContactSense about aboutin living with of current safety situation family identity living situation 11 12. Negatives -from childrenliving in kinship care Limits on freedom inside/outside the house Financial hardship Transition to independence Lack of understanding about their placements Loss and change - adjusting to 2 households Contact issues re parents and siblings 12 13. Positives -from children living inkinship care Good to be rescued from LA care Feel safe and safer than before Can maintain family, siblings and friends relationships Feel more settled, loved, cared for Family supports /more committed to education /ambition / achievements Sustain selfesteem, identity & racial heritageself Feeling safe with grandmotherQ Understanding impact on grandparents lives ?13 14. What works in kinship care ?Measuring outcomesMeasures used Placement stability Placement quality Relationship quality Child well-beingwell-(Hunt et al, 2008)14 15. Protective FactorsProtective factors associated withbetter outcomes-the following wereoutcomes-statistically significant variables interms of providing placementstability Placement with grandparent, childsacceptance of care, younger childrenin the household (Hunt et al , 2008) What about the impact on Grandparents? 15 16. Section TwoGrandparents VoicesResearch Project for theGrandparents Association 16 17. Three groups of grand-parents in thegrand-Grandparents Voices study Those who were kinship carers* Those who provided significant levels of childcare (30+ hours per week) Those who were denied access to their grand-grand-children The research was promoted on thewww. begrand.net grandparents web site as wellas through direct mailings, GPA, FRG 17 18. Prior Situation and Court Order 70% of the grandchilds birth parents were previouslyliving apart prior to their child being placed with theirgrandparents in kinship careIt was much more likely that the grandchildren wereliving with their mother (42% of cases) than withboth parents (22%) or their son (2%) prior to living inkinship care.75% subject to a court order of which 65% hadResidence Orders, 21% had SGOs and 9% lookedafter in relative foster care. The research study highlights the supports neededby those groups 18 19. What are the reasons for thesegrandchildren being in kinship care?The highest ranked answers, in rank order 66% gave substance misuse -mainreason 44% gave child protection concerns -2ndmain reason 50% gave mental health problems as 3rdhighest reasonQ Impact on grandparents quality of life?19 20. The impact of being agrandparent kinshipcarer on quality of life (n= 480)20 21. Quality of life issues-summaryissues- Across 749 quality of life responses 96%revealed that the kinship carers quality orlife and relationships had not improved. 3/4 of the kinship carers were working fulltime prior to becoming a kinship carer. Sincethat time just under 1/3 are working, of whom6/10 working part-time. part- Financial circumstances & a range of qualityof life measures indicate that grandparentscircumstances are getting worse. Q How are relationships effected? 21 22. Impact on relationships of being a grandparent kinship carer (n=269)NOTE Only 1% of answers indicated that these relationships had 22remained the same or improved 23. Impact on relationships For most grandparents the relationship withtheir partners and spouses providesconsiderable support Where there are grandchildren living inkinship care with their grandparent (s) themajority of all grandparents pre-existingpre-relationships change significantly anddetrimentally, at the very least, for theduration of the kinship care arrangement.23 24. What grandparents said to us 24 25. Research FindingsMore on relationships Those very relationships which prior to theplacement provided support, actual orpotential soured and worsened in a significantmajority of cases reported here. The only relationship reported as havingimproved was that between the grandchildand the grandparent.Q So what agencies actually helped? 25 26. Agencies Providing Help- Help-Grandparents Views 26 27. Key questions raised by the study Q What cost to their health and well being can or should grandparent kinship carers bear? And Q What services help grandparent kinship carers? 27 28. Section Three So what supports are needed? Give carers recognition for the job they do Facilitate fair and adequate financial support Provide accessible and friendly family-led assessmentfamily-and support services Offer direct work and groupwork with the children Provide casework/ groupwork support for carers Offer help with managing contact with parents ifrequired28 29. What more needs tobe done? done? Value kinship care as a positive resource for childrenand see carers as a resource to be nurtured Develop an appropriate family-led framework for family-assessment and support of kinship carers Develop education services as a major source ofsupport for kinship children to build resilience 29 30. How best to supportkinship placements? Consider kinship care as 1st choice forstability Get to know the child Consider all the options Know the law and mind the guidance Work with the whole kinship network Be aware of alliances, conflicts in family Be prepared to support kinship placements Recognise the challenges of contact(Argent, H, 2009) 30 31. Summary of research findings Kinship care increasing and being valued Grandparents, predominantly grandmothersare the largest group of kinship carers It needs to be assessed as to whether itis the right option for the child Kinship carers/children- services neededcarers/children- It involves new policies, ways of working Governments are reluctant to invest31 32. Section Four Finally Some Outstanding Questions With the advent of a new administration in2010 and the Big Society, will it be a case ofback to the family again for kinship care? OR can the Big Society continue to embrace,and extend the established shared care-care-shared responsibility philosophy, or socialcontract if you will, between the state, theindividual and the family aboutresponsibilities, duties and rights? 32 33. Kinship care references Aldgate, J and McIntosh, M (2007) Looking after the family,Social Work Inspection Agency, Edinburgh Argent, H (2009) Supporting kinship placements, BAAF Broad, B (2010) Grandparents Voices, GrandparentsAssociation Broad, B, (2007) Kinship care; what works- who cares?works- Social Work and Social Sciences Review, 23, 2 Broad, B and Skinner, A, (2005) Relative Benefits: placingchildren in kinship care-a good practice guide. BAAFcare- Broad, B (2007) Kinship Care, Save the Children Fund Hunt, J, Waterhouse, S, and Lutman, E (2008) Keeping themin the family, BAAF, London Farmer, E & Moyers, S (2008). Kinship care, Jessica Kingsley Talbot, C & Calder, M, eds. (2006) Assessment in kinshipcare.care. RHP Wade, J, et al Special Guardianship in Practice, BAAF 33 34. My contact detailsProfessor Bob BroadEmail broadb@lsbu.ac.ukInstitute of Social Science ResearchFamilies and Social Capital GroupWeb Address www.lsbu.ac.uk/families 34