Caregivers and Child Welfare Case Workers Find Benefits from Pregnancy Prevention and Sexual Health Promotion Training
What We Did
Most interventions aimed at preventing pregnancy and promoting sexual health among youth in foster care focus on the youth. The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services developed a training on pregnancy prevention and sexual health promotion for foster parents, other caregivers, and child welfare caseworkers. Chapin Hall conducted a formative evaluation of the training. The evaluation included a pre-and post-training survey and interviews with trainers and training participants.
What We Found
- There was widespread agreement among both caregivers and caseworkers about the need to talk with youth in care about sexual health.
- Views of the training and the trainers were generally positive, although caregivers tended to rate both the training and the trainers more highly than caseworkers
- Both caregivers and child welfare workers agreed that this type of training was badly needed. However, caseworkers tended to focus on the training needs of foster parents rather than on their own training needs.
- Without exception, training caregivers and caseworkers together was perceived as beneficial.
What It Means
What was clear from both the qualitative (interview) and quantitative (survey) data is that there is a pressing need for this type of training among both caregivers and child welfare workers. Moreover, training caregivers and case workers together benefits both groups. Child welfare administrators should consider developing and implementing similar trainings for foster parents and case workers who care for or work with youth.