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. Summer 2012;2012(136):79-91.
doi: 10.1002/cad.20012.

Vulnerability and Agency: Beyond an Irreconcilable Dichotomy for Social Service Providers Working With Young Refugees in the UK

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Vulnerability and Agency: Beyond an Irreconcilable Dichotomy for Social Service Providers Working With Young Refugees in the UK

Aoife O'Higgins. New Dir Child Adolesc Dev. .

Abstract

Many young refugees face significant difficulties in securing support from social services providers. This study invited 21 young refugees aged 16 to 21 to take part in focus groups and follow-up interviews about their experiences of accessing this support. The findings reveal that young refugees may deliberately conform to expectations about their vulnerability in order to benefit from greater support from service providers. Social workers may fail to consider young refugees' abilities and understand the ways in which each individual is vulnerable. The study suggests that group work may be an effective way to engage young refugees to overcome this.

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