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Young people transitioning from out-of-home care and problematic substance use The views of young people and workers in Victoria

  • Susan Baidawi (a1) and Philip Mendes (a2)

Abstract

Existing research findings indicate that young people from state care backgrounds experience higher rates of substance use and misuse than the general population. This study explored the nature of this relationship via semi-structured, qualitative interviews with four young people who had recently transitioned from state care and three workers in the out-of-home care field, plus a focus group with seven out-of-home care and leaving care workers. The findings suggest that a range of individual, interpersonal and systematic factors contribute to problematic substance use. They include the use of self-medication to address past and present trauma, a lack of meaningful and stable relationships, and state care policies and practices that lead to young people experiencing premature and unplanned exits from state care. Some significant implications for policy and practice are identified.

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Young people transitioning from out-of-home care and problematic substance use The views of young people and workers in Victoria

  • Susan Baidawi (a1) and Philip Mendes (a2)

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