The 131st Annual Meeting (November 15-19, 2003) of APHA

The 131st Annual Meeting (November 15-19, 2003) of APHA

4020.0: Tuesday, November 18, 2003 - 9:30 AM

Abstract #61965

Relationship Between Spirituality, Religious Practices and Readiness Recovery Among Homeless Women: Findings from the Arizona Site of the Homeless Families Initiative

Brian Arthur, MA and Michael S. Shafer, PhD. Community Rehabilitation Division, University of Arizona, 721 N. Fourth Avenue, #107, Tucson, AZ 85705-8445, (520) 917-0841,

During the past few years, attention has been focused on the role that spirituality and a "higher authority" plays in the recovery of persons with addictive disorders and/or psychiatric impairments. Indeed, the value of spirituality as an intervention variable represents one of the driving forces behind the current administration's "faith-based initiative." In addition, there is a growing body of research on the “stages of change” conceptualization of addiction treatment and lifestyle change management. This presentation describes Arizona site-specific findings from the CMHS/CSAT Homeless Families Initiative that explore the role of spirituality in the lives of homeless women with psychiatric and/or substance abuse difficulties who are caring for their dependent children.

Over 200 women were randomly assigned to one of two service modalities: 1) an intervention condition reflecting a client-centered, empowerment-based, intensive team case management approach using the principles of motivational interviewing; or 2) a control condition reflecting “treatment as usual” using a staff-directed, brokered case management model. Study participants were interviewed at program entry (baseline) and at a 3-month follow-up.

This presentation summarizes the following findings: 1) the instruments appeared to be performing favorably with this study population; 2) study participants displayed significant differences in their response patterns with regard to religious behavior versus spirituality; and 3) there was evidence to suggest a relationship between expressed spirituality and readiness to change, but not religious practices and change. Suggestions for future research studies are provided.

Learning Objectives:

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

Design and Evaluation of Interventions for Homeless Families

The 131st Annual Meeting (November 15-19, 2003) of APHA