Supporting transitions to adulthood for youth leaving care: Consensus based principles

Annemiek T. Harder, Varda Mann-Feder, Inger Oterholm, Tehila Refaeli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


The transition to adulthood for young people leaving care has become a significant subject of research over recent decades, especially given consistent findings that suggest that alumni of care are at high risk of adverse outcomes. However, there is no definitive consensus on how findings from research can best inform practice with youth in transition out of care. The aim of the present article is to provide principles that can support practice based on a project mounted by a group of international care leaving researchers. These principles include, among others, the importance of listening to the young people, to supporting their autonomy during and after care as well as their cultural identity and diversity, to ensuring their access to education after care, to ensure preparation for leaving care and ensure that care leavers rights are upheld so that they get the support they need. The discussion considers these principles in light of the micro-, meso- and macrosystem levels in Bronfenbrenner's social ecological model (1994) and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989) and reviews the challenges of generating these principles. In addition, implications for policy are highlighted in relation to rights, entitlements and access to services.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105260
JournalChildren and Youth Services Review
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2020


  • Care leavers
  • Good practice
  • Knowledge transfer
  • Principles
  • Transition into adulthood

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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