Families' Experience of Short-Term Residential Respite Care for Children in the Context of Parenting Stress.
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Education
Four families participated in this exploratory study which aimed to understand their experience of short-term respite care in a community children’s home and considered how this might relate to parental stress. Qualitative and quantitative data were collected concurrently over a 12-week period. Interviews allowed participants to voice their perspective of their experience while psychometric estimates of parental stress and parent and child psychological wellbeing were used to extend and validate (or refute) qualitative data. Discrepancies were found between parent report and children’s experience of residential respite care. Younger children, especially, found residential care difficult. Overall, parent report of reduced stress and improved psychological wellbeing were not validated by psychometric measures. Limitations of the study are discussed and suggestions proposed for future research.