Constructing the Meaning of “Family” in the Context of Out-of-Home Care: An Exploratory Study on Residential Care Leavers in Harare, Zimbabwe

Getrude Dadirai GWENZI

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)Researchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Care leavers’ family lives are not well-documented in Global South literature. The West has seen an increase in studies focusing on the family concept. This article focuses on the concept of “family” and family membership from the perspective of care leavers. Data from semistructured interviews and “family lists” with 30 care leavers (aged 18–25) from Zimbabwe are presented. The findings suggest that although there is evidence of heteronormative definitions of “family” and ideas of “family” as biological, new definitions are coming up in the developing world. Some participants acknowledge nonbiological definitions of family based on connectivity, co-residence, affective practices, family contact, and other forms of family display in the context of out-of-home care. The Zimbabwean cultural influence is highlighted as a factor in care leavers’ constructions of “family” especially during the emerging adulthood stage. Practical implications for social policy, those working with care leavers, and wider society are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEmerging Adulthood
Early online date19 Sep 2018
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 19 Sep 2018

Fingerprint

Zimbabwe
Home Care Services
home care
Family Practice
Public Policy
adulthood
Interviews
contact

Keywords

  • care leavers
  • family meanings
  • out-of-home care
  • residential care
  • transition into adulthood
  • Zimbabwe

Cite this

@article{2f962f395dba4362b8588ebca7aeb905,
title = "Constructing the Meaning of “Family” in the Context of Out-of-Home Care: An Exploratory Study on Residential Care Leavers in Harare, Zimbabwe",
abstract = "Care leavers’ family lives are not well-documented in Global South literature. The West has seen an increase in studies focusing on the family concept. This article focuses on the concept of “family” and family membership from the perspective of care leavers. Data from semistructured interviews and “family lists” with 30 care leavers (aged 18–25) from Zimbabwe are presented. The findings suggest that although there is evidence of heteronormative definitions of “family” and ideas of “family” as biological, new definitions are coming up in the developing world. Some participants acknowledge nonbiological definitions of family based on connectivity, co-residence, affective practices, family contact, and other forms of family display in the context of out-of-home care. The Zimbabwean cultural influence is highlighted as a factor in care leavers’ constructions of “family” especially during the emerging adulthood stage. Practical implications for social policy, those working with care leavers, and wider society are discussed.",
keywords = "care leavers, family meanings, out-of-home care, residential care, transition into adulthood, Zimbabwe",
author = "GWENZI, {Getrude Dadirai}",
year = "2018",
month = "9",
day = "19",
doi = "10.1177/2167696818800846",
language = "English",
journal = "Emerging Adulthood",
issn = "2167-6968",
publisher = "SAGE Publications Ltd",

}

Constructing the Meaning of “Family” in the Context of Out-of-Home Care: An Exploratory Study on Residential Care Leavers in Harare, Zimbabwe. / GWENZI, Getrude Dadirai .

In: Emerging Adulthood, 19.09.2018.

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)Researchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Constructing the Meaning of “Family” in the Context of Out-of-Home Care: An Exploratory Study on Residential Care Leavers in Harare, Zimbabwe

AU - GWENZI, Getrude Dadirai

PY - 2018/9/19

Y1 - 2018/9/19

N2 - Care leavers’ family lives are not well-documented in Global South literature. The West has seen an increase in studies focusing on the family concept. This article focuses on the concept of “family” and family membership from the perspective of care leavers. Data from semistructured interviews and “family lists” with 30 care leavers (aged 18–25) from Zimbabwe are presented. The findings suggest that although there is evidence of heteronormative definitions of “family” and ideas of “family” as biological, new definitions are coming up in the developing world. Some participants acknowledge nonbiological definitions of family based on connectivity, co-residence, affective practices, family contact, and other forms of family display in the context of out-of-home care. The Zimbabwean cultural influence is highlighted as a factor in care leavers’ constructions of “family” especially during the emerging adulthood stage. Practical implications for social policy, those working with care leavers, and wider society are discussed.

AB - Care leavers’ family lives are not well-documented in Global South literature. The West has seen an increase in studies focusing on the family concept. This article focuses on the concept of “family” and family membership from the perspective of care leavers. Data from semistructured interviews and “family lists” with 30 care leavers (aged 18–25) from Zimbabwe are presented. The findings suggest that although there is evidence of heteronormative definitions of “family” and ideas of “family” as biological, new definitions are coming up in the developing world. Some participants acknowledge nonbiological definitions of family based on connectivity, co-residence, affective practices, family contact, and other forms of family display in the context of out-of-home care. The Zimbabwean cultural influence is highlighted as a factor in care leavers’ constructions of “family” especially during the emerging adulthood stage. Practical implications for social policy, those working with care leavers, and wider society are discussed.

KW - care leavers

KW - family meanings

KW - out-of-home care

KW - residential care

KW - transition into adulthood

KW - Zimbabwe

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85058526937&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1177/2167696818800846

DO - 10.1177/2167696818800846

M3 - Journal Article (refereed)

JO - Emerging Adulthood

JF - Emerging Adulthood

SN - 2167-6968

ER -