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Examining Financial Hardship and Caregiver Subgroups in Kinship Foster Placements: A Machine Learning Approach

Abstract
Children placed with kinship foster parents can experience less disruption and stronger family ties than children in non-kinship placements. However financial hardship can restrict kinship caregivers from taking in relatives’ children. This study investigated (1) kinship caregivers’ financial standing compared to a national subsample of caregivers and (2) whether certain factors moderate the likelihood that a kinship caregiver will be able to provide care for additional non-relative children without additional financial assistance from the Department of Social Services (DSS). This study utilized primary data from 345 relatives across North Carolina and nationally representative secondary data on 6394 individuals’ financial circumstances. One-sample t -tests and chi-square goodness-of-fit tests revealed that caregivers who participated in our study generally fared better financially than caregivers at the national level. Model-based recursive partitioning results showed that if an additional child is placed in the home the caregiver’s perceived capacity to provide care without extra DSS support decreased by approximately 19% with a greater decrease (35%) among a subgroup of caregivers with low financial well-being status. The heterogeneity in caregivers’ experiences capacities and financial needs buttresses the need for nuanced interventions and programs targeting these caregivers enabling them to provide more stable care for children placed in their homes.
Authors
Imani Careese Johnson Solomon Hadi Achulo Kanisha Coleman Brevard and David Ansong Imani Careese Johnson: School of Social Work The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Chapel Hill NC 27516 USA Solomon Hadi Achulo: School of Social Work The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Chapel Hill NC 27516 USA Kanisha Coleman Brevard: School of Social Work The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Chapel Hill NC 27516 USA David Ansong: School of Social Work The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Chapel Hill NC 27516 USA
Keywords
kinship care ; financial hardship ; financial well-being ; machine learning ; model-based recursive partitioning (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Rank
0.49
Search
Machine Learning
Series
Societies 2024 vol. 14 issue 3 1-13
Time Added
2024/03/11 03:45
Total Downloads
0
Year Published
2024
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