Provision of Transitional Housing: A Socially Sustainable Solution for Care Leavers in Zimbabwe

Getrude Dadirai Gwenzi

Care leaver transitions from care have attracted a great deal of scholarly attention in the Global North. More recently, scholars from the Global South have begun documenting care leavers’ experiences, and the evidence suggests their outcomes are largely negative. In Zimbabwe, institutionalisation is still a common form of child welfare for young people without family care, yet a handful of studies exist on the institutional care experiences.

This paper presents findings from a study on care leavers’ (n = 15) experiences of transitional housing at three institutions in Zimbabwe. Using the social sustainability conceptual framework, the study found that transitional housing offers continuity of care, relationships, and a smoother, gradual transition from care to independence. However, care leavers feared that transitional housing was temporary and their basic needs were not always met. The study makes recommendations for aftercare policy and transitional services provision for care leavers in Zimbabwe.

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