Evidence from SOS Children’s Villages projects shows that trauma and the psychosocial and mental health needs of children are not well understood by those who work with or care for children in alternative care settings.
Children in alternative care are one of the most vulnerable groups to Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE)s, and research shows that 75 per cent of children in alternative care have experienced trauma before their alternative care placement. At the start of the project, a scoping exercise was conducted in each project country to identify the challenges and gaps facing children and young adults in alternative care and those who care for and work with them. Eighty-nine young adults with care experience and 143 care professionals were surveyed. Of the 89 young adults, more than 1 in 5 did not feel at home in their care placement, and more than 1 in 3 did not feel supported by their caregivers in understanding and managing emotional issues.
Therefore, SOS Children's Village embedded trauma-informed practices into alternative care settings to effectively address this social issue.