Presentation on theme: "Youth in Care Transition to Adulthood : Needs and Resources Development of a youth peer support network."— Presentation transcript:
Youth in Care Transition to Adulthood : Needs and Resources Development of a youth peer support network
Presentation content 1. Introduction 2. Quebec youth in care - transition to adulthood 3. Réseau l’Intersection de Québec (RIQ) Historical perspective Goals Governance structure 4. Conceptual framework Peer support Civic life participation Partnership 5. Evaluation process
1. Introduction Largest Canadian province : area sq. km (15% NTA - 17 administrative regions) Population : 8 million [2 nd largest (23% NTP) - French speaking -79%; english 8%] Capital : Quebec City (Old historical district on UNESCO’S World Heritage List ) Area : 454 sq. km (city) Population : inhabs. Aged 0-24 years = 25% Quebec City Province of Québec
1. Introduction Centre jeunesse de Québec – Institut universitaire State institution whose reason is to help youth and families overcome adversity and promote personal, family and social well- being. Three missions Child welfare institute (1/16) Rehabilitation institute for youth with social problems University institute of social services
1. Introduction Centre jeunesse de Québec – Institut universitaire Six aspects must be covered to fullfill this last mission as a university institute : 1. Research (must pertain to the organization's mission, needs and priorities) 2. Education and practical training (Interveners, professionals and students) 3. Knowledge transfer 4. Development of innovative practices 5. Evaluation (Interventions’ efficiency and outreach as well as experimentation and support in the development of innovative practice) 6. Research outreach
2. Quebec youth in care - transition to adulthood At the Centre jeunesse de Québec-Institut universitaire, nearly 900 youth graduate from care every year. Youth in transition face many challenges : Lack of family support Low income (education, training, social skills) Residential instability Substance abuse Emotional distress Etc.
2. Quebec youth in care - transition to adulthood The importance of peer-support Several researchers suggest that initiatives based on peer-support should be encouraged. Peers might represent a significant source of support during the transition to adulthood. «Peer support is about understanding another’s situation empathically through the shared experience of emotional and psychological pain. When people find affiliation with others they feel are ‘like’ them, they feel a connection. It is a system of giving and receiving help founded on key principles of respect, shared responsibility and mutual agreement of what is helpful». (Mead, 2001).
3. Réseau l’Intersection de Québec Historical perspective This initiative was inspired by Youth in Care Canada, also known as the National Youth in Care Network (since 1986). This organisation is driven by Canadian youth and alumni from care Project proposal 2011 Youth consultation 2012 Gathering youth and potential partners 2013 Selecting a coordinator Funding Committee set up 2014 Non-profit organization status Summer program activities Official launching
3. Réseau l’Intersection de Québec Goals Provide material, informational and emotional support to youth aging-out of care Enhance transitioning youth’s social network through peer- support Maximize the use of available resources through partnership; Increase young people’s participation in their community’s civic life Install a dialogue between youth and decision makers regarding social services meant for youth aging out of care
3. Réseau l’Intersection de Québec Governance structure Board members Partner’s committee Youth’s committee Volunteer’s committee General assembly
4. Conceptual framework favors a youth-adult shared control participation. Involved adults act as models for youth and offer various types of support. Tasks and responsibilities are distributed between adults and young people according to each one’s interest and expertise. Authors suggest that an approach which puts forward principles of shared control between adults and young people is susceptible to offer optimal conditions for youth’s empowerment. Indeed, youth who are connected to adults with resources increase their social capital. Adults can expand youth’s social networks by exposing them to other influential adults.
4. Conceptual framework Peer support Help offered by individuals sharing similar life experiences results in : better connection more authentic empathy normalizes emotional reactions arouses feelings of hope Many authors mention that youth value adults that bare a likeness to them, that is, have similar life experiences and faced similar challenges. It seems to give them more credibility, make them more trustworthy. is a peer support network (young coordinator, social grouping of youth sharing similar life experiences). We hope RIQ will: increase youth’s thrust (hopefully through non-judgmental attitudes) increase youth’s willingness to share their life experience and thus receive the help they really need offer mutual support Increase youths’ leadership and empowerment
4. Conceptual framework Citizen participation Citizen’s contribution to finding answers to their community’s needs. This contribution implies a shared dialogue with other citizen’s in order to transform and improve community life. The RIQ wishes to educate and guide young people aging out of care towards an increased participation in their community’s civic life. Let them be change agents in their community’s development. Young people who are involved in producing knowledge that impacts policy and action in their communities may develop a stronger sense of responsibility towards others. Citizenship education Citizen participation Exercise of political power
4. Conceptual framework Citizen participation Citizen participation benefits in many ways : Better understanding of community issues More effective answers to community needs Adequacy between community needs and services Redistribution of power, resources and information Development of citizen knowledge and competencies For youth, citizen participation may results in : Increased self-esteem Better understanding and appropriation of what is at stake Acquisition of new competences and skills Increased life quality
4. Conceptual framework Partnership Integrating existing services is a challenge. Partnership, that is a “shared project based on a commitment between different social actors in which the mission, the goals, the strategies and the duration are precisely defined” (Ninacs, 2002 : 201) is primordial. This partnership is not about creating new services for the community. Instead, it seeks to add value to existing services and to promote the integration of those services. By involving many partners, this initiative seeks to ensure that community services are known to youth aging out of care, are available to them and are coherent with their expressed needs.
4. Conceptual framework Partnership Several partnerships have been established within the community. Targeted services are from three main areas : Housing Employment Social integration
5. Evaluation process Research objectives Describe the needs and available resources for youth aging out of care Evaluate eventual effects of the Réseau l’Intersection de Québec initiative Research questions 1. What are the needs of aging out of care youth ? 2. What community resources are available to support these youth? 3. What are the stakeholder’s perception of the peer-support network initiative ? Youth Participants Child welfare workers Partners
5. Evaluation process Questionnaires (variables) Partners Child welfare workers Youth Independent living Awareness of available resources Perceived and received social support Adult-youth collaboration Empowerment Citizen participation Awareness of available resources Partnership Adult-youth collaboration Citizen participation Expectations about the peer-support network Awareness of available resources Services integration Adult-youth collaboration Citizen participation Expectations about the peer- support network
5. Evaluation process Questionnaires (examples) Independent living : employment, education, housing Awareness of resources : victimization, substance abuse, food supply Social support : scope, connectedness, types of support Adult-youth collaboration : respect, communication, information access Empowerment : self-esteem, autonomy, optimism, power Citizen participation : abilities, active participation Partnership : sharing resources and responsibilities, coordination Services integration : communication, cooperation, collaboration
5. Evaluation process Research schedule Spring 2014 Development of research design Scientific evaluation Summer 2014 Ethic committee approval Fall 2014 Experimental project Winter 2015 Apply for grant funding Spring 2015 Knowledge transfer Pursue the evaluation process
Contact information Researcher : Marie-Claude Richard, Ph.D. Laval University, Quebec Research programing manager : France Nadeau, MSW Centre jeunesse de Québec-Institut universitaire, Quebec
THANK YOU! TAK !
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