Social Care and Child Welfare in Ireland: Integrating Residential Care, Leaving Care and After Care


This book addresses the major issue of social care and child welfare in the twenty-first century, and in particular the imperative to integrate residential child care, leaving care and aftercare in order to achieve a congruent system of care. Currently these areas are disconnected elements of a system of care, whereas in an integrated system they would be fully connected. The book is focused on the situation in Ireland but offers international relevance. An ecological perspective, with recognition of the importance of both the child and the worker as dyadic elements within this system, is the focus throughout. The child's perspective is presented through a biographical narrative of a former child in care and with case studies from the author's practice experience. The workers' perspective is addressed through detailed critical analysis of the elements which constitute the profession of social care, which include practice, theory, approaches to care, policy, rights, research, legislation, social justice, professionalisation, privatisation and the socio-political and socio-economic factors which impact on the profession of social care, and therefore children in care.Through this analysis a nuanced and informed perspective, identifying both strengths and weaknesses, is offered on the care system in Ireland in 2015. The book identifies significant deficiencies in the current aftercare services available in Ireland, and advocates for a statutory entitlement to aftercare support for all care leavers. A benefit/cost analysis is provided to support such a change.

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Dublin, St. Patrick's Institution, Finglas, Ballymun, childcare, School. Teenage, disadvantaged back