Life Story Work: Why, What, How and When.
Ryan, Tony. Walker, Rodger.
British Association for Adoption & Fostering (BAAF)
Safron House 6-10 Kirby STreet
London EC1N 8TS, Tel: 020 7520 0300
This guide is designed to help practitioners, adoptive parents, and foster carers assist adopted/foster children in learning about their past. Chapter 1 discusses why life story work is important to children who are separated from their birth families, principles for working with children on life stories, and dealing with confidentiality. Chapter 2 presents 10 commandments for communicating with children and guidelines for communicating about life story work. Chapters 3 and 4 review types of research resources and first steps for getting started on life story work. Following chapters address: answers to questions about life story work; helping the child to talk about feelings; elements of a life story book; bridging the past, present, and future; and using other techniques to help children cope with the trauma of separation from birth parents. Chapters 10 through 13, explore techniques that can be used with different types of children and situations, including black and minority ethnic children, therapy groups, children with a disability, and children who have been sexually abused. Final chapters present an interactive approach to life story work, discuss using life story work in rehabilitating children to their families, explain using life story work in other settings and with teenagers who have made contact with their birth parents via social media, and discuss the elements of a later life letter. 55 references.
ADOPTED CHILDREN; FOSTER CHILDREN; BIRTH HISTORY; CHILD WELFARE; FAMILIES; SOCIAL WORKERS; UNITED KINGDOM; LIFEBOOKS; FAMILY RELATIONSHIPS; children with disabilities; sexual abuse; family reunification