Challenges and Opportunities Experienced by Young Adults Transitioning Out of Informal Kinship-Based Foster Care in Bikita District, Zimbabwe

Charles Dziro - Emerging Adulthood


The desire to understand young adults’ transition into adulthood from informal kinship-based foster care has been growing. This article examines the challenges encountered by, and the opportunities available to, young adults as they transition from informal kinship-based foster care to independent living in the Bikita District of Zimbabwe. In-depth interviews were conducted with 26 young people who had left care and key informants. Data were analyzed using a thematic framework. Key findings included the young adults’ need for proper preparation in formal education, health, social welfare, and employment to ward off the challenges they face before they leave informal kinship-based foster care. The opportunities available to the young adults included cultural identity, social capital, and training in independent life skills within their kinship group. Recommendations are made for better preparation and support to young people transitioning out of informal kinship-based care in Zimbabwe.