UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Seeking placement permanency for foster children : an analysis of a portion of a year's cases in non-metropolitan British Columbia, 1948-1953 Proven, Nettie Isobel


In this study an attempt is made to examine what might be considered a self-evident premise, namely, that the ultimate quality of the casework achieved in foster home placement work (or in any other area of social work) is related in a very real way to the extent to which basic social work philosophy and concepts, along with good casework method and techniques are put into practice by the social workers doing the job. To an extent, this study was undertaken in an attempt to assess whether or not there is validity to the impression which sometimes is gained that, with the recent increase in the demand for social services, a lack may develop in workers' appreciation of the fundamental concepts of the profession because of the many pressures involved in "getting the job done." Through detailed analysis of thirty-two placement cases an effort is made in this thesis to demonstrate the practicality of "idealistic" social work philosophy and concepts and the essential need for these being as clearly understood and as well utilized as the casework method and techniques employed in the performance of a day to day social work job. The information recorded in the thirty-two cases studied was read with an appreciation of the limitations of such subjective material but on the basis of the material available it was found that the records revealed that in general the workers handling the cases studied seemed to have a reasonable degree of understanding of most of the basic philosophy and concepts of their profession. The area of general weakness observed in the small group of cases examined, was in the use of those principles which involve diagnostic understanding and skill. The study also revealed some evidence of lacks in inter-agency relationships in the cases analyzed and seemed to indicate some need for better coordination of agency programmes.e Throughout the piece of evaluative analysis which was attempted in this thesis, the need for child placement work being founded on a secure base of knowledge, understanding and application of the fundamental professional philosophy and concepts along with competent training and developed skill in sound casework method and techniques was demonstrated. Based on this foundation, it seemed that the permanency and security desired in long term foster home placements could be achieved.

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