What do we know about the impact of stress on foster carers and contributing factors?
Adams, E., Hassett, A. and Lumsden, V. 2018. What do we know about the impact of stress on foster carers and contributing factors? Adoption and Fostering. 42 (4), pp. 338-353. https://doi.org/10.1177/0308575918799956
|Authors||Adams, E., Hassett, A. and Lumsden, V.|
Whilst there are increasing numbers of children in foster care, there are decreasing numbers of foster carers. Research has highlighted the many challenges that foster carers face in caring for children who have experienced adversity.
This review synthesises and evaluates the current empirical literature with the aim of exploring the causes and consequences of stress experienced by foster carers and what factors serve to lessen or increase this. PsychINFO, ASSIA, Web of Science and Google Scholar were searched for relevant studies, which were chosen for review based on specific inclusion criteria. This search identified 15 papers. Factors identified as contributing to stress included managing the impact of wider systems, such as social services and the foster carer’s family, as well as the impact of individual factors such as the child’s behaviour. Consequences of stress included a direct impact on foster carer retention. Methodological issues identified related to sampling, research design and cultural variability.
Future research could usefully include the perspectives of people in the system around foster carers, including social workers and the birth children of foster carers. Clinical implications include the promotion and provision of training and support, and the development of integrated ways of working with services and foster carers’ families.
|Keywords||Foster care; foster carer; stress; literature review; looked after children|
|Journal||Adoption and Fostering|
|Journal citation||42 (4), pp. 338-353|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI)||https://doi.org/10.1177/0308575918799956|
|Online||11 Dec 2018|
|Publication process dates|
|Deposited||08 Jan 2019|
|Accepted author manuscript|
1views this month
3downloads this month