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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 218762 Find in a Library
Title: Caregiver Commitment to Foster Children: The Role of Child Behavior
Journal: Child Abuse & Neglect  Volume:31  Issue:4  Dated:April 2007  Pages:361-374
Author(s): Oliver Lindhiem; Mary Dozier
Date Published: April 2007
Page Count: 14
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Mental Health
Bethesda, MD 20852
Grant Number: R01 52135;K02 74374
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study explored the relationship between child behavior problems and caregiver commitment to their child in a group of young foster children.
Abstract: Results revealed that caregiver reports of child behavior were significantly associated with level of caregiver commitment, and this relationship was found to be highly stable over an 11-month period. Caregivers were found to be more committed to children who had low levels of caregiver reported behavior problems in comparison to children who had high levels of reported behavior problems. This finding is consistent with previous research that has found behavior problems disrupt placements for foster children. The authors note, however, that it is possible that the relationship between caregiver commitment and caregiver reported child behavior may be related to the length of time the child has been in placement. As such, child behavior may have a greater effect on caregiver commitment early in placement rather than later in placement. Future research should examine caregiver commitment over a longer period of time to help elucidate the direction of the relationship between caregiver commitment and caregiver reported child behavior. Participants were 102 caregiver-child dyads recruited from the greater Baltimore areas as part of an ongoing longitudinal study examining how young children coped with early foster care placements. Caregiver ratings of child behavior were assessed using the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) and caregiver commitment was assessed using the “This is My Baby” Interview. A sub-sample of 76 caregiver-child dyads were reassessed 11 months later to examine stability in caregiver commitment over time and to examine the direction of the relationship between the 2 variables under consideration. Data were analyzed using a cross-lag path model and a full path model. Tables, figures, references
Main Term(s): Foster homes; Foster parents
Index Term(s): Child welfare; Problem behavior
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