How the COVID-19 Pandemic Impacted Young Parents With Foster Care Experience

Posted July 7, 2021, By the Annie E. Casey Foundation

Young father holds a newborn

A new webinar from the Annie E. Casey Foundation examines how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected young parents with experience in foster care.

The webinar, Five Ways the COVID-19 Pandemic Affected Young Parents With Foster Care Experience, shares findings from a Foundation-funded study involving 26 young parents. It includes quotes and photos from the parents as well as a presentation by researchers from the University of Maryland and Montclair State University.

The panelists, including a young father who served on the research team, explore five themes during the 90-minute session. These themes — culled from parent input — are:

  1. employment disruptions and economic hardships;
  2. educational challenges;
  3. mental health challenges;
  4. insufficient resources and barriers to receiving services; and
  5. silver linings, such as the opportunity to spend more time with children and build resilience.

Allison Holmes, a senior research associate with the Casey Foundation, moderates the session. Panelists included:

  • Elizabeth M. Aparicio, assistant professor with the University of Maryland’s School of Public Health
  • Svetlana Shpiegel, associate professor with Montclair State University’s Department of Social Work and Child Advocacy
  • Alexander Sanchez, researcher and young father
  • Tammi Fleming, senior associate with the Casey Foundation

Learn more about the research

  • View the Storms & Blossoms book of photos taken by the young parents
  • Watch a webinar and read a report to learn how young parents feel about COVID-19 vaccination
  • Explore more resources via the ReSHAPING Network, a website devoted to this research

    Learn more about young parents in foster care

    • Download a fact sheet about young people with foster care experience and their eligibility for pandemic relief
    • Go to a tool kit for system leaders about expectant and parenting youth in foster care

    Review the slides from this webinar presentation

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