Foster care of AIDS orphans : social workers' perspectives

De Jager, Este (Stellenbosch : University of Stellenbosch, 2011-03)

Thesis (M Social Work (Social Work))--University of Stellenbosch, 2011.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The goal of this study is to shed some light on the needs of children orphaned by AIDS as well as on the training and support that their foster parents will need, in order to provide guidelines for equipping foster parents to care for AIDS orphans. The motivation for this study was the rapid spread of HIV/AIDS in the South Africa and the one million South African AIDS orphans left in its wake. Most of these children end up in substitute homes, and many of them in foster care. Researchers agree that AIDS orphans have special needs because of the circumstances surrounding their parents’ death. Foster parents will therefore need to be prepared to meet these needs. It is an internationally documented fact that foster parents have a need for training and support to meet the demands of foster care, and having an AIDS orphan as a foster child will increase, and focus this need. The study was also motivated by the current shortages and challenges in the foster care system in South Africa which makes it difficult for social workers to effectively train and support foster parents, and aims to contribute towards overcoming some of these problems so that foster parents can be properly prepared to see to the well-being of the AIDS orphans in their care. The research was done based on a literature study, which firstly made use of the Ecological Systems Perspective to explore the effects of parental death by AIDS on their children. Subsequently an overview of foster care within the South African context is given, with emphasis on foster care in general, foster care within the challenging South African context and foster care of AIDS orphans. The last part of the literature review discusses foster parent cell groups as a means of training and supporting the foster parents of AIDS orphans for the parenting process. The empirical investigation of the study investigated to what extent, and in what ways, social workers are training and supporting foster parents to care for AIDS orphans. This investigation confirmed some of the findings of the literature study, namely that AIDS orphans have needs that differ from those of other foster children and that social workers are too overburdened to be able to give the foster parents of these orphans the needed training and support. In light of the findings derived from the literature study and empirical research, conclusions and recommendations are made concerning the phenomena under investigation. The recommendations focus on guidelines that can be used by social workers to train and support the foster parents of AIDS orphans. The recommendations centre on the utilisation of resource-friendly methods to train and support foster parents; bringing structure into the foster care process and on social workers having to use research for guidance.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die doel van hierdie studie is om lig te werp op die behoeftes van kinders wat deur VIGS wees gelaat is, sowel as op die opleiding en ondersteuning wat hul pleegouers nodig het, ten einde riglyne te verskaf vir die toerus van pleegouers om na VIGS-weeskinders om te sien. Die studie is gemotiveer deur die vinnige verspreiding van MIV/VIGS in Suid- Afrika en die een miljoen VIGS-weeskinders wat agtergelaat is. Die meeste van hierdie kinders word in plaasvervangende huise ingeneem, waarvan baie pleegsorgplasings is. Navorsers stem saam dat VIGS-weeskinders spesiale behoeftes het as gevolg van die omstandighede wat met hul ouers se dood gepaard gaan. Pleegouers sal dus voorberei moet word om in hierdie behoeftes te voorsien. Internasionale studies bewys dat pleegouers self ‘n behoefte aan opleiding en ondersteuning het om aan die vereistes van pleegsorg te voldoen. Hierdie behoefte verdiep en word meer gefokus vir ‘n pleegouer wat ‘n VIGS-weeskind in pleegsorg neem. Die studie is ook gemotiveer deur die huidige tekortkominge en uitdagings inherent aan die pleegsorgstelsel in Suid-Afrika wat dit vir maatskaplike werkers moeilik maak om pleegouers genoegsaam op te lei en te ondersteun. Die studie het dus ten doel gehad om ‘n bydrae te lewer tot die oorkoming van sommige van hierdie probleme sodat pleegouers voorbereid kan wees om na die welsyn van hierdie weeskinders in hulle sorg om te sien. Die navorsing is gebaseer op ‘n verreikende literatuurstudie. Die literatuurstudie het eerstens gefokus op die gebruik van die Ekologiese Sisteemperspektief om die effek van ouers se afsterwe weens MIV/VIGS op kinders te ondersoek. Daarna is ‘n oorsig gegee van pleegsorg binne die Suid-Afrikaanse konteks. Klem is geplaas op pleegsorg in die algemeen, pleegsorg binne die uitdagende Suid-Afrikaanse konteks, en pleegsorg spesifiek met VIGS-weeskinders. Die laaste deel van die literatuuroorsig bespreek die moontlikheid om pleegouer-selgroepe te benut om pleegouers die nodige opleiding en ondersteuning te gee vir die proses van ouerskap. Die empiriese studie ondersoek ook in watter mate en op watter manier, maatskaplike werkers besig is om die pleegouers van VIGS-weeskinders op te lei en te ondersteun. Hierdie ondersoek bevestig sommige van die bevindinge van die literatuurstudie; spesifiek dat VIGS-weeskinders unieke behoeftes het en dat maatskaplike werkers te oorlaai is om die pleegouers van hierdie weeskinders die nodige opleiding en ondersteuning te bied. In die lig van die bevindinge van die literatuurstudie en empiriese navorsing is gevolgtrekkings en aanbevelings gemaak. Die aanbevelings het primêr gepoog om riglyne te verskaf wat deur maatskaplike werkers gebruik kan word om pleegouers op te lei en te ondersteun. Die aanbevelings het gesentreer rondom die gebruik van hulpbronvriendelike maniere om pleegouers op te lei en te ondersteun; die strukturering van die pleegsorgproses en die noodsaaklikheid vir maatskaplike werkers om daadwerklik van navorsing gebruik te maak vir leiding.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/6500
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