Date of Paper

5-2016

Type of Paper

Clinical research paper

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)

Department

Social Work

First Advisor

David J. Roseborough

Department/School

Master of Social Work

Abstract

Annually, in Minnesota, thousands of youth transition out of foster care. The purpose of this content analysis was to explore some of the variables associated with a successful transition while “aging out of” foster care, and to better understand how youth define and experience this transition from their perspective and in their own words. I asked questions such as: what do youth perceive as having helped them, what do they need from formal and informal caregivers, and what might they need as they transition into the greater independence associated with young adulthood. Data were collected from online interviews, documentaries, blogs and memoirs, in order to hear youth speak in their own voices and from their perspectives about their experiences and successes in navigating this transition. Primary themes identified included: sources of resilience (internal and external), and in particular, the importance of “continuity” and “stability.” Implications for formal and informal care givers are discussed.

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Social Work Commons

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