Exploring foster carers' perceptions of the long-term effectiveness of the Fostering Changes training programme.
Thesis DisciplineHealth Sciences
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Science
This thesis describes a study that explored how foster carers perceive and experience the effects of participating in the Fostering Changes programme in the 13-15 month period following training. This was achieved using a qualitative approach. Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) informed both the data collection and analysis. Interviews were carried out with five carers who were part of a group that had completed the Fostering Changes programme through a community organisation in the Canterbury region. Analysis of the interviews revealed five superordinate themes: Fostering Changes was a beneficial training programme; the need for further professional support post training; the challenges of fostering continue; variability in carers’ confidence; training for carers is important. Overall, the findings indicated that Fostering Changes is a well-designed programme that has had an enduring positive impact on these carers’ lives. Nevertheless, the results suggest that carers’ need for training, support, and clinical services, cannot be solely met through a single, time-limited, group training programme. The five themes are discussed in detail and are compared to the existing literature. Implications and potential future research are also outlined, and recommendations for the Fostering Changes programme are suggested.