Effectiveness of a trauma-informed care psychoeducational program for foster carers - Evaluation of the Fostering Connections Program.

Abstract:

BACKGROUND:The need to improve the quality of foster care training has been highlighted and evidenced-based programs that aim to support foster carers in the care of children who have experienced trauma are warranted. OBJECTIVE:This study aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of the Fostering Connections program, a newly developed trauma-informed care program within the national child welfare agency in Ireland. PARTICIPANTS AND SETTING:The study included 79 foster carers. The Fostering Connections group-based experiential intervention was delivered over a period of 6-weeks in a community-based setting to intervention group participants. METHODS:A quasi-experimental design was used to compare the results of the intervention group (n = 49), to a control group (n = 30,) who received usual care. Standardized assessment measures were used at baseline, 6-weeks on completion, 16 weeks and 15 months post-intervention. Foster carers' knowledge of trauma-informed fostering, tolerance of misbehavior and fostering efficacy, and children's emotional and behavioral difficulties were assessed. RESULTS:Significant improvements were found in foster carers' knowledge of trauma-informed fostering (p < 0.001), tolerance of child misbehavior (p = 0.007) and fostering efficacy (p < 0.001), with effect sizes ranging from medium to large and sustained over fifteen months (ES = 0.07-0.14). Significant improvement was also found in children's emotional and behavioral difficulties at fifteen months (p = 0.019), with a small effect size (ES = 0.05). CONCLUSION:Preliminary evidence suggests that Fostering Connections is potentially an effective intervention in increasing foster carer's capacity to provide children with trauma-informed care.

journal_name

Child Abuse Negl

journal_title

Child abuse & neglect

authors

Lotty M,Dunn-Galvin A,Bantry-White E

doi

10.1016/j.chiabu.2020.104390

subject

Has Abstract

pub_date

2020-04-01 00:00:00

pages

104390

eissn

0145-2134

issn

1873-7757

pii

S0145-2134(20)30045-4

journal_volume

102

pub_type

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