Young Children in Brief Separation – ‘LUCY, 21 months, in foster care for 19 days’


Fostered for 19 days, Lucy becomes very attached to her foster mother.

SKU: 21
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Producer: James and Joyce Robertson
Year Produced: 1976
Running time: 31 minutes
PDF:  Teaching Notes


Lucy, 21 months, a sturdy serious child, is in foster care for 19 days. Like Jane she is too young to carry a clear image of the absent mother and readily accepts the foster mother’s care. Lucy is helped by her fathers daily visits, and by her relationship with her substitute mother.

Despite episodes of anxiety and resistive behaviour she manages well within the supportive relationship. At reunion she reunites eagerly with her mother. But there is a problem. During the 19 days Lucy had become very attached to her foster mother and has difficulty in giving her up.

The film shows dramatically the conflict of feeling, and how during subsequent weeks mother and foster mother co-operate in helping Lucy to resolve it. Together they prevent her experiencing the sudden loss of a second loved person.

A guide booklet accompanies the film.

This film was made in 1976 in black and white, so the film and sound quality is not to modern standards. This should not diminish its value as a moving historic record.