Maryland's Administrative Office of the Courts has provided the SSW with over $20,000 in funding for a Voice of Youth Exploratory Study.
Led by the SSW's Corey Shdaimah, PhD, The purpose of the project is to inform the Maryland judiciary about the experiences of youth who engage with the foster care courts, with the goal of enhancing the ability of youth in foster care to engage with the courts.
Dr. Shdaimah and an MSW research assistant will conduct virtual interviews with young adults who are currently or formerly involved in foster care in order to elicit their perspectives. Dr. Shdaimah is working closely with the Maryland Administrative Office of the Courts’ Foster Care Court Improvement program to design and implement the study.
The potential impact of the program will be to signal to youth in foster care that the Maryland judiciary is interested in their perspectives on their own experiences. The hope is that these perspectives will enable the court to improve the ability and willingness of youth to engage with courts in order to shape their trajectories within and beyond the foster care system.