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Le réseau familial de jeunes adultes hébergés en famille d’accueil jusqu’à leur majorité

Claudine Parent, Marie-Hélène Labonté, Marie-Christine Fortin, Marie-Christine Saint-Jacques, Françoise-Romaine Ouellette, Sylvie Drapeau, Caroline Paré-Lévesque

This study documents the family networks of 12 young adults who, over the course of their childhoods, have been placed in foster homes until they reach the age of majority. The goal was to describe the makeup of their family networks, understand the importance of birth- and foster-family connections, and identify factors that may have facilitated or hindered the maintenance of these connections. All participants underwent semi-structured interviews during which they were asked to construct two genograms: one representing their family while in foster care and the other their current family. The results suggest that family representations are diverse and specific to the experiences of each participant. While for a few, there is some complementarity between the foster-family and birth-family connections, the tendency is for the connections to be exclusive. Finally, while the quality of the connection is vital to ensuring positive placement, it does not guarantee that the connection will continue once foster care ends.