Children in families with parents from refugee backgrounds are often viewed as a vulnerable group with increased risks of developing physical or psychological problems. However, there is very little research regarding the strategies that parents might use to parent their children in a new country while they also manage the interrelated challenges of poverty, social isolation, maternal stress, and mental ill health that often go along with resettlement. We explore the application of ecological modeling, specifically at individual, institutional, and policy levels, within an Australian context to critique the factors that shape the development of parenting capacity within refugee families settling in a new Western country. Ecological modeling enables examination of how public policy at local state and national levels influences the individual and family directly and through the organizations that are given the task of implementing many of the policy recommendations. Recommendations for health practice and research are made.
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