226349 Meeting the Mental Health Needs of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer Youth: A Community Based Participatory Study

Wednesday, November 10, 2010 : 1:15 PM - 1:30 PM

Paula Arnett , Psychology Department, California State University San Bernardino/Rainbow Pride Youth Alliance, San Bernardino, CA
Maggie Hawkins, MPH, CHES , Rainbow pride Youth Alliance, San Bernardino, CA
David Chavez, PhD , Department of Psychology, California State University, San Bernardino, San Bernardino, CA
Current research suggests that Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered, and Queer (LGBTQ) youth are at risk for a number of mental health issues. LGBTQ youth also experience additional stress during their adolescence due to their sexual minority status making it more difficult for LGBTQ youth to fully integrate a positive self-image. Additionally, evidence suggests that homophobia and discrimination play a major role in mental health issues among LGBTQ youth. Despite this increased risk, LGBTQ youth, as a group, have been historically underserved in health care. Hence, LGBTQ youth struggle finding services tailored to their specific needs. This project utilizes a Community Based Participatory Research (CBPR) approach that incorporates a social justice perspective to examine mental health issues for LGBTQ youth by exploring the mental health strengths and needs of local LGBTQ youth. Work to date consists of running focus groups of LGBTQ youth as well as running separate focus groups of professionals deemed to be competent in providing sensitive mental health services to LGBTQ youth. The results that emerged present the mental health strengths and needs of the youth from their own and their allies' perspectives. Additionally, both the youth and mental health professionals' address perceptions of the existence of local programs and curriculum designed to serve LGBTQ youth. Divergent and convergent threads are discussed. Finally, the community based participatory research team has determined that the next step is to develop training materials regarding LGBTQ youth's mental health strengths and needs. Plans and initial progress in their development are discussed.

Learning Areas:
Advocacy for health and health education
Diversity and culture
Other professions or practice related to public health
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Discuss one example of a Community Based Participatory Research project that is utilizing a social justice model to help empower LGBTQ youth to develop training materials for mental health professionals Explain the mental health strengths and needs of LGBTQ youth Explain necessary changes and emphases for mental health providers to better serve LGBTQ youth’s mental health needs

Keywords: Community-Based Partnership, Mental Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been the liason between the university and community partner in my dual status as student and staff member. I have co-led the focus groups and have, in collaboration with my research team, led the analysis. I also am expert on the content due to it representing a current version of my lived experience.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

Back to: 5169.0: LGBT Youth Research