Looking after the family: a study of children looked after in kinship care in Scotland

Study commissioned by the Social Work Services Inspectorate, now the Social Work Inspection Agency.


There were many people who helped with this study.

The study would not have been possible without the participation of the 30 children and their kinship carers who welcomed us into their homes and generously gave their time.

We would like to thank the 32 local authorities across Scotland who provided us with detailed and helpful information in the survey. We would especially like to thank the five social work departments who participated in the intensive study and facilitated our contact with the families and children. Our appreciation is also due to the New Fossils Support Group, the Glasgow Family Support Association and The Fostering Network.

We are particularly grateful to Malcolm Hill, Hedy Cleaver, Elaine Farmer, Sue Moyers and Marina Barnard for their advice on the context and methodology of the study. Special thanks go to Joan Hunt, whose scoping work on kinship care for the Department of Health was an invaluable source of reference, and Tony Maluccio for his expertise on the international aspects of kinship care, and along with Chemi T. Davis and Peter Pecora, for giving permission to reproduce the poem on kinship care. Thanks also go to Anne Black, Ian Donagy, Owen Dudley Edwards and Anne Laurence, who provided expert help on historical sources.

We would also like to thank Sharon Vincent, who was involved in the original specification for the study and conducted some of the interviews.

The study could not have been undertaken without the help of Barnardo's Scotland and Who Cares? Scotland and we extend our gratitude to Mary Duffy, Douglas Hamilton and Deirdre Watson who conducted the interviews with the children.

Lastly, we would like to thank the Social Work Inspection Agency, who supported the study throughout. We acknowledge that the content of this report does not necessarily reflect the views of the Social Work Inspection Agency or the Scottish Executive.

Jane Aldgate
Miranda McIntosh

Jane Aldgate is Professor of Social Care at The Open University and Honorary Professor of Social Work at Queen's University Belfast. She was seconded to SWIA to undertake this study.

Miranda McIntosh is Inspection Project Manager at SWIA. She was Research Officer to the study.

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