skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 228866 Find in a Library
Title: Relationships with Children and Families
Journal: Child & Youth Services  Volume:30  Issue:3/4  Dated:December 2008  Pages:211-234
Author(s): Kiaras Gharabaghi
Date Published: December 2008
Page Count: 24
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: “Relationship-based practice” in child and youth care are examined in this article from conceptual, linguistic, and power-based perspectives.
Abstract: One of the issues addressed is the concept of power and how it might influence the approach to relationship-based or relational practice, particularly as it pertains to role definition and issues related to authority. All child and youth worker relationships are characterized by power imbalance between the practitioner and the child. Much of what contributes to power imbalance in practitioners’ interactions with children and youth is structurally embedded in institutional dynamics, culture, convention, language, and social expectations. Factors that intensify power imbalance in relationships with children include cultural stereotypes of gender, age, race, and ethnicity, along with expectations of convention between adults and children/youth and the use of adult vocabularies and professional jargon in the language of the relationship. A second professional issue explored in this article involves the development of relationships with clients in the context of teams. Working as part of a team has many implications for relationship development. One of the challenges associated with team casework is that every team member could potentially have a relationship with the child. This can instigate competition among team members to be the child’s favored person in the relationship. Teams can also limit what is possible in relationship development, as each team member’s interaction tends to be functional based on a particular expertise. The third issue addressed is the context of training and professional development in the context of “relationship-based” work and “relational” practice, which pertains to training professionals in the features of therapeutic interactions (“relational”) rather than the features of a bonding between two specific individuals (“relationship-based"). 27 references
Main Term(s): Juvenile (Under 18)
Index Term(s): Child protection services; Family intervention programs; Juvenile case management; Parent-Child Relations; Social workers
Note: For related articles in this issue, see NCJ-228864-65 and NCJ-228867-71.
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.