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Children in commercial boarding homes : a survey of wards of the Children's Aid Society of Vancouver living in these units in 1954 Wick, Lawrence Bernard

Abstract

This study is part of a survey of the wards of the Children's Aid Society of Vancouver, B. C. who were not in foster homes on October 31, 1954. Fourteen wards, ranging in age from fourteen to nineteen years, were resident in commercial boarding homes. Agency policy recommends the limiting of the use of commercial boarding homes to the occasional placement of a boy or girl over the age of eighteen years who is self-supporting and sufficiently mature to meet the responsibilities of such a setting. Accordingly, the purpose of this study is to determine why the commercial boarding homes were being used for these particular wards and to what extent the needs of these wards were being met. Information gathered from the records of the children and their parents was summarized and tabulated for the purpose of study and description. This material was examined to determine whether there was any correlation between the children's pre-admission care and their subsequent adjustment in foster and group homes and their later placement in commercial boarding homes. Case illustrations of three of the wards were used In order to elaborate on their developmental experiences and adjustment in various settings. These cases were typical in illustrating the unsettled early lives experienced by most of this group and the effect of these experiences in preventing them from adjusting to the demands of a foster home and, in some cases, of group homes. Further emphasis was given to the harmful effect of continued foster home replacement. In summary, the study of this group of wards pointed out the great need for a receiving home for all children on admission to care for the purposes of familiarization, diagnosis and planning. In order to avoid the use of commercial boarding homes arid to meet the needs of those children who are unable to adjust in foster homes, a variety of group-living residences should be developed. A treatment home is an urgent necessity to assist disturbed children while they are still young enough to be helped. In general, greater resources are required for preventive work with children while still in their own homes as well as for the improvement of the services to the children after their admission into care.

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