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versión On-line ISSN 1668-7027


MUNOZ QUEZADA, María Teresa  y  LUCERO MONDACA, Boris Andrés. Reinstating youngsters with moderate mental disability from a group home for minors back to their families. Interdisciplinaria [online]. 2008, vol.25, n.1, pp.77-99. ISSN 1668-7027.

The article presents a description and evaluation of a three year case study of three youngsters with moderate mental disability from a group home for minors. We used a biography approach, and a life story technique. Through this technique, the person articulates his or her past, present and future in an interview or an open interaction. Our goal was to understand and face the mothers' life experiences in order to create an intervention method based on their own reality and perspective. Apart from presenting the children's family characteristics, particularly that of their mothers, the results bring out key information that strengthen and promote the current system of family integration for children and youngsters with special educational needs. Out of the three cases, only one family achieved the reinstatement of their child with a disability; the second family is in the process of finishing the reinstatement, and in a third case, the mother abandoned the process. Based on these experiences, reinstating a child who was looked after by a child care and protection center back to his or her family, is a complex issue. The family plays a fundamental role in the process of bringing their child back into their homes, and is a key factor for a successful intervention. Families who have a support network, both at an individual and social level, have better possibilities of reinstating their child back into the family. Another important point to consider is individual strategies mothers use to renew the bond with their child, which are influenced by the stages they are going through regarding the adaptation process and acceptance of the disability. Other aspects that influence whether families abandon the reinstatement process or not are the type of disability, the cause of transfer to the care and protection center, the stage that each mother is going through regarding their child's disability linked to their vital cycle, the mothers' age and their constant denial in coping with disability and their maternal roles. The family reinstatement program is recognized as a good system which allows children with disabilities to achieve better growth and development with their families, while acknowledging at the same time, that adoption is practically nonexistent. This system requires constant interventions and follow-ups, not only with the tutor, but also including the whole family in the process. Moreover, multi-disciplinary work at home, in community institutions and in other social levels that bring support to the family's readjustment of their internal bonds and structure, should be considered key interventions. Strengthening parental figures helps parents change their perspective regarding their child's disability, and is crucial in accomplishing true social integration, as well as allowing children to grow and live in a family as wholesome and complete beings.

Palabras clave : Family; Reinstatement; Child's disability; Child care home.

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