The municipalities can’t be trusted at all. They write down everything you say, they change it, so it fits into their small twisted minds and when they makes ”mistakes”, it’s something you said, because they can’t make mistakes!!! […] You really don’t have any adult who you can go to with your problems, because all the adults in the system have to report to those above them.
(Adda 19 years old, www.boernetinget.dk, translated from Danish)
This statement captures a serious problem in social work with children and youth: namely that some of them experience that they are not looked on, listened to or understood. Such experiences give the children a basic distrust to the ‘system’ and adults in general. Thus, some of them end up turning their back to the ‘system’ and adult society. This can have negative consequences on the children’s well-being, their social integration and their ability to get help and support in managing an already difficult life.
These children’s frustrations arising from distrust in social work is the point of departure of this research project about ‘Trust in social work with children’. The project explores what promotes and hinders trust between children and social workers. The focus is mainly on the children’s own perspectives, but also includes interviews with social workers and parents as well as studies of the legislative and municipal documents which set the frame of social work.
The project consists of the following 4 sub-projects:
- Explorative child-led examination of trust in social work (read more)
- Interactional dynamics of trust between the child/youth and the adults involved in care for this child (read more)
- The institutional framing of trust in social work with vulnerable children/youth (read more)
- A quantitative examination of children’s/youth’s experiences of trust (read more)
The research project is directed by professor in Social Science, Dr. Hanne Warming from the department of Society and Globalisation at Roskilde University and is a part of the international scientific network TRUDY.