British Journal of Developmental Disabilities vol:53 issue:105 pages:131-146
This study investigated from the parents' perspective what reasons influenced their decision to place their child with a disability in residential care, what alternatives might have delayed or prevented it and how they feel about the decision. A multiple case study was used consisting of 15 families who had chosen to place their child under the age of 6 years in residential care. Data were collected by semi-structured interviews. The results confirm that families are looking for a balance between the interests of all family members. Four family types with the same patterns of child, family and context factors, in combination with specific motives for out-of-home placement, are described. Family support services were perceived by the parents as not fulfilling their needs. Although it was a difficult decision, parents do not regret placing their child. Recommendations are formulated to improve family support services.