The outcomes for children who’ve been in Out-of-Home Care do not tell a good story.
Regardless of the reasons for it, separation from family is a traumatic experience. This trauma is often compounded by multiple placements resulting from any combination of the impacts of trauma, ill-equipped carers, or decisions being made by a care system under a lot of pressure. Trauma impacts our brain, biology, body, beliefs and behaviours in significant ways and when experienced early on it can have profound long-term impacts.
Research shows that young people leaving care in Australia are more likely to:
Have poor education including leaving school early.
65% of young people did not complete year 12.
Be unemployed, underemployed, and earning lower wages.
29% were unemployed (compared to a national average of 9.75%)
Be homeless or have unstable housing arrangements
35% of young people leaving care were homeless in the first year of leaving care
Have children at a young age
Have challenges with physical health, mental health and substance abuse
Lack informal social support
Be involved in the criminal justice system
46% of young men and 22% of young women with a care experience had been involved in the juvenile justice system.
What if we could change this story?
What if we could prevent some of the negative outcomes that we often see church and community programs trying to respond to – homelessness, prison, addiction, early pregnancy and unemployment. What if we could support families, love children and young people well, see the reunification of families and contribute to healing, before these other realities unfold?
We don’t all have to do the same thing but we can all do something.
There are many different ways that you can get involved with The Homeward Project. Explore these at the link below.