Portland State University. School of Social Work
Term of Graduation
Date of Publication
Master of Social Work (MSW)
Foster home care -- Oregon -- Portland
1 online resource (3, vi, 65 pages)
The research problem in this thesis can be briefly stated as a study of a general population to test certain demographic variables, in particular those of income, age and education, which may or may not have a significant relationship to an expressed willingness to care for foster children; and to further examine whether certain special characteristics of a child, in particular those of increased age, physical handicap, minor emotional problems or mental retardation, further increase unwillingness to care for foster children.
The sample was selected by a two- stage cluster sampling taken from the Southeast catchment area of metropolitan Portland, Oregon. From this sample of 787 individuals, the survey was conducted by trained interviewers, using a questionnaire and personal interview. The data used in this research project were then extracted from the larger survey, and computed to determine the relationship of age, income and education to willingness to care for foster children. The data were extracted on the basis of the chosen variables of income, age and education and five questions relating specifically to willingness to care for foster children.
As had been anticipated, the findings showed that the general population is not willing to care for foster children. However, certain significant findings were related to willingness to care for foster children. A significant relationship was found between income and willingness to care for foster children in that those respondents with incomes between $4,000-$20,000 expressed the most willingness to care for foster children while there was significant underrepresentation in both the highest and lowest income groupings to express a willingness to care for foster children with an almost lineal relationship of decreasing age with increasing willingness to care for foster children. There is no significant relationship, it was found, between education of the respondent and willingness to care for foster children. There is a lineal relationship of increasing willingness to care for foster children with increasing age of the foster child. Of those individuals expressing a willingness to care for foster children, there is no significant decrease in willingness because of physical disability, minor emotional problems or mental retardation.
The results of this study have certain implication for recruitment and selection of foster parents. The findings indicate the need for further research to explore why more individuals in the population do not express a willingness to care for foster children, how such an interest can be encouraged and what criteria can be used in recruitment and selection.
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Hughes, John; Kaeser, Linda A.; Norman, Susan E.; Rinderknecht, Lillian; and Wills, John, "A demographic study based upon income, age and education variables as related to the willingness or unwillingness to accept foster children" (1970). Dissertations and Theses. Paper 656.