Young people on the edge of care: the use of respite placements

Document type
Report
Author(s)
Dixon, Jo; Biehal, Nina
Publisher
SPRU
Date of publication
1 November 2007
Subject(s)
Children and Young People, Families
Collection
Social welfare
Material type
Reports

Download (1.2MB )

This exploratory study evaluated a local authority residential respite care scheme, which was developed to prevent long-term family breakdown.The innovative service offers a series of planned short breaks (1-3 nights) over several months. The service integrates planned prevention, placement and rehabilitation services. Alongside the residential workers, the Community Support Team (CST) and social workers work with young people and parents to rebuild their relationships and develop their communication skills and avoid entry to long-term care.

This study collected data on 25 young people referred to the service and followed-up 24 of them 11 months (on average) later. Information was collected from young people and parents at both stages. Survey questionnaires and interviews were undertaken with residential workers, CST workers and social workers and focus groups were held with staff. Standardised measures were incorporated to measure change in child emotional and behavioural difficulties, family functioning and parental mental health.

The young people and parents had multiple and severe behavioural and emotional difficulties, often long-term. Difficulties became less severe for many young people, and many young people and parents felt that residential and CST staff had contributed to this improvement. However, most nevertheless remained above the clinical threshold for emotional and behavioural difficulties and two thirds moved away from home for a while (to care placements or relatives). Although one fifth (5) were likely to remain in care long-term, this appeared a positive outcome, as all had experienced emotionally abusive parenting over a long period of time.

Related to SPRU

Intermediate care, reablement or something else?: a research note about the challenges of defining services

There is substantial confusion about and overlap between health and social care services labelled as ‘intermediate care’ and those labelled as ‘reablement’. This brief research note, explores the policy

Transitions into and out of unpaid care

Around 2,100,000 m adults in the UK take on a caring role each year and a similar number cease care-giving each year. Transitions into and out of unpaid care are key turning points in individuals’ lives

Outcomes assessment for people with long-term neurological conditions: a qualitative approach to developing and testing a checklist in integrated care: summary

People with long-term neurological conditions (LTNCs) argue that receiving integrated services improves their quality of life. This research looked at development of innovative approaches to health

The necessities of life for children: Poverty and Social Exclusion Survey 2012

This paper provides an analysis of questions on attitudes to necessities for the child items and activities in the 2012 PSE Attitudes to Necessities survey. For the purposes of this research, adults

More items related to this publisher