Caring for children through adoption and foster care is critically important. However, the journey of adoption and foster care can be challenging, and families are often not prepared to meet the unique challenges of their children (e.g., trauma, attachment difficulties, etc.). It is critical to come alongside families and support them on this journey. In this presentation, the presenters will discuss some key considerations for meeting the mental health needs of adoptive and foster families. First, psychologists, licensed mental health professionals, and ministry leaders are encouraged to consider ways to help adoptive and foster children heal from trauma (Purvis et al., 2007). Second, the presenters will discuss ways to help families work with their children to build a closer attachment bond (Hoffman et al., 2017). Finally, participants will examine contextual factors that are important to consider when working with adoptive and foster families (e.g., cultural adjustment, grief/loss, relationships with birth parents; Hook & Hook, 2023). The presenters will integrate research, clinical examples, and practical applications throughout the presentation. By helping to meet the mental health needs of adoptive and foster families, psychologists, other mental health professionals, and ministry leaders can help families survive and thrive.
315 | Support in the Journey: Meeting the Mental Health Needs of Adoptive and Foster Families
Joshua Hook, Ph.D.; Jennifer Hook, M.A.
Approved For CE
Psychologists, Licensed Professional Counselors, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists, Licensed Clinical Social Workers, Pastors, Pastoral Counselors, Lay Counselors, Coaches
Approved For CME/CEU
1. Describe the key challenges and mental health needs of adoptive and foster families
2. Discuss practical interventions for helping adoptive and foster children heal from trauma and build strong attachments with their caregivers
3. Identify contextual factors that are important to consider when working with adoptive and foster families
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