Please note that there are two different conference venues:
June 14/15 - Century City Conference Centre
June 16 - Kirstenbosch Conference Centre (transportation available)
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Thursday, June 15 • 09:30 - 11:00
Invited Symposium: Young people’s transition out of care towards young adulthood: Locating youth resiliencies within community contexts in Africa and Europe - Adrian D. van Breda, Robbie Gilligan, Kwabena Frimpong-Manso, Sue Bond

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Invited Symposium Summary
Young people’s transition out of care towards young adulthood: Locating youth resiliencies within community contexts in Africa and Europe

Presenters: Adrian D. van Breda, Robbie Gilligan, Kwabena Frimpong-Manso, Sue Bond
Young people in care are frequently removed from their communities of origin, making the transition out of care into young adulthood particularly challenging. This symposium explores the personal environmental resiliencies that facilitate successful care-leaving transitions, showcasing the importance of a network of possible selves, in-care, community and workplace resources.

Invited Symposium Abstracts
Becoming Established in the World of Work as an Important Potential Source of Resilience for Young People Transitioning from Care 
Robbie Gilligan (Trinity College Dublin, Ireland)
Introduction: Entry to work remains a key pathway to social inclusion for young people transitioning to young adulthood, and especially so for ‘high-risk’ groups such as young people leaving care. This presentation reviews what can be learned from care-leavers who have successfully entered the world of work.
Methods: This presentation reviews relevant research evidence to explore key issues for young people in care and care-leavers negotiating the care to work pathway. It draws on findings from the first phase of the Care to Work Pathways (CtWP1) study (Arnau and Gilligan, 2015; Gilligan and Arnau, 2016) and other relevant sources. CtWP1 was an exploratory cross national study (Ireland and Spain) seeking to learn lessons from the experiences of young adult care leavers who had successfully established themselves in the world of work.
Findings: Findings focus on emerging insights on how care-leavers, their carers and other formal and informal actors serve as resilience resources, supporting progress on the care to work pathway. There will also be discussion of implications for policy and practice in cultivating conditions supportive of the work progress of care leavers.

Building and Utilizing Community Resilience: Experiences of Young People Leaving Out-of-Home Care in Ghana
Presenter: Kwabena Frimpong-Manso (University of Ghana, Ghana)
Introduction: HIV/AIDS and poverty have resulted in thousands of children going into out-of-home care in Ghana. Many are now aging out of care, yet little is known about their experiences care-leaving. This study investigates the challenges facing care-leavers in Ghana and factors outside the residential care facilities that influence their resiliencies.
Methods: This paper reports on a qualitative case study of a private children’s home in Ghana, viz. SOS Children’s Villages. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with young people who had left care at least a year previously. The interviews were undertaken in English and pidgin, in locations convenient for the participants, and lasted 45-60 minutes. The transcribed data from the interviews were analyzed using the framework analysis approach (Ritchie and Spencer, 2003). Ethical approval was obtained from the ethics committee at Queen’s University Belfast.
Findings: Despite challenges with the transition from care, some care-leavers nonetheless demonstrated resilience. These were mostly those who used the relationship with their caregiver as a secure base to form positive relationships after leaving care. They were also able to create and utilize community resources, including the church and other care-leavers.

Possible-Selves as Contributors to the Resilience of Young People Leaving Care: The Role of the Child and Youth Care Community
Presenter: Sue Bond (University of Johannesburg, South Africa)
Introduction: Care-leavers’ transition from care and return to their community of origin is challenging and characterised by poor outcomes. Possible-selves theory, which has a reciprocal relationship with resilience theory, may be useful in preparing young people for the transition out of care while still within the Child and Youth Care community. 
Methods: Participants were recruited from four Child and Youth Care Centres in the Eastern Cape region of South Africa. Life maps and possible-me tree activities, in conjunction with semi-structured interviews, were used to collect data from a sample of 12 young people who were ageing out of the alternative care system. In addition, focus groups were held with four social workers and eight child and youth care workers to identify how they contributed to the development of the possible-selves and resilience of young people preparing to leave care.
Findings: The young people’s possible-selves were developed to varying degrees, drawing on community-based resilience resources: natural mentors, role models and extra-mural activities. However, the professional carers showed a one-dimensional and dated understanding of resilience as an inherent character trait, which may negatively impact the young people’s possible-selves and care-leaving journey. 

avatar for Sue Bond

Sue Bond

Lecturer, Department of Social Work, University of Johannesburg
Sue joined the University of Johannesburg in January 2016. She began her career as a social worker in child protection services, which sparked her interest in the field of care leaving and care leavers. On leaving the field of child protection she opened her own practice and has... Read More →
avatar for Adrian D. van Breda

Adrian D. van Breda

Professor of Social Work, University of Johannesburg
Adrian is Professor of Social Work at the University of Johannesburg, where he was Head of Department from 2014 to 2016. He is President of the Association of South African Social Work Education Institutions and Vice President of Resilio, the international association for the promotion... Read More →
avatar for Kwabena Frimpong-Manso

Kwabena Frimpong-Manso

University of Ghana
Area of specialization: Children in and leaving out-of-home care, Community Development, Child Welfare, Reunification.
avatar for Robbie Gilligan

Robbie Gilligan

Professor of Social Work and Social Policy, School of Social Work and Social Policy, Trinity College Dublin
Robbie is Professor of Social Work and Social Policy, at Trinity College Dublin

Thursday June 15, 2017 09:30 - 11:00 SAST
Room 11 Century City Conference Centre