Working with youth in-care: implications for vocational rehabilitation practice
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Purpose. Youth in-care face a range of barriers that hinder their career development, not least of which is the high prevalence of mental health, emotional and behavioural problems among this population and lack of access to vocational rehabilitation services. The aim of this article is to provide an overview of the factors that impede the school-to-work transition of youth in-care from their perspective and that of the key stakeholders in their lives. Method. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 65 youth in-care, 27 carers, 14 caseworkers and 21 guidance officers in Queensland, Australia. Results. There is a range of social, psychological and environmental factors that impact the career development of youth incare, some of which are unique to this population. Factors include the effect of placement stability, negative in-care experiences, negative perceptions about them, limited access to caseworkers, lack of resources, poor educational planning and lack of vocational guidance and career exploration. Conclusions. These findings have a number of implications for practice, including the need for rehabilitation counsellors to understand and address the multiple barriers facing youth in-care, to provide vocational rehabilitation services throughout the school-to-work transition period and to coordinate support from carers, caseworkers and guidance officers.
Disability and Rehabilitation
Copyright 2011 Informa Healthcare. This is an electronic version of an article published in Disability and Rehabilitation, Vol. 33(13-14), 2011, pp. 1125-1135. Disability and Rehabilitation is available online at: http://informahealthcare.com with the open URL of your article.
Health and Community Services