Adolescent offenders’ experiences of father involvement in a South African
Labuschagne, Louis Johannes
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The literature reviewed for the purpose of this study suggests the potential role of father absence in adolescent offender behaviour and incarceration. Nevertheless, the research focus on this subject matter has predominantly been on international populations and adult offenders’ experiences of father involvement and does not seem to place much emphasis on either adolescents’ experiences regarding father involvement or adolescent offenders. The proposed study, therefore, aimed to explore and describe adolescent offenders’ experiences of father involvement in a South African context. The research employed a qualitative explorative-descriptive research design. A non-probability, purposive sampling technique was used, and the sample size was determined through data saturation. The sample included nine male adolescents between the ages of 17 – 19 years from a correctional centre in Pretoria, Gauteng. A demographic information form, semi-structured individual interviews, and drawings were utilised as the data collection methods and were analysed through thematic analysis. The findings identify four main themes with sub-themes: Experiences of father involvement before incarceration; experiences of father involvement while incarcerated; needs regarding father involvement; and suggestions to improve father involvement. The findings are primarily indicative of the general lack of father involvement, lack of fatherly support, and father absence experienced by the participants and highlight the need for further research focused on interventions in this regard.
- Health Sciences