Online Program

Roots Project: Exploring Pathways to Improve Mental Health and Supportive Family Relations in Hispanic Immigrants

Monday, November 2, 2015

Margarita Hart, Esperanza Ministries, Greenwood, IN
Dawn Galbreath, RN, Esperanza Ministries, Greenwood, IN
Katrina Conrad, MPH, Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Indiana University Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health, Indianapolis, IN
Silvia Bigatti, PhD, Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Indiana University Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health, Indianapolis, IN
Background/Purpose: Through years of community-based work in Johnson County, Indiana, partners have observed alarming issues related to the mental health of the Hispanic immigrant population they serve.  Traumatic migration experiences are often referred back to as a source of stress and trauma.  This CBPR project was developed out of mutual interest to investigate the underlying root causes of depression, alcohol abuse, and domestic violence in men within this community. 

Methods/Approach: A mixed-methods design was utilized; both qualitative and quantitative data were collected from Hispanic males and qualitative data were collected from Hispanic females.  The recruitment of 65 Hispanic males and 30 Hispanic females was led by the community partner. 

Findings: Over half of the male participants had signs of alcoholism, depression, or domestic violence actions, with nearly 30% experiencing a co-occurrence of all three.  Traumatic stress from the migration experience was significantly associated with these outcomes.  Qualitative data supported these findings.  Among female participants, loneliness and difficult childhood paths appeared as themes to explain depression, domestic violence, and substance abuse. 

Implications:  Findings from this project support what the community partner hypothesized, that migration trauma is associated with depression, alcohol abuse, and domestic violence actions in the Hispanic population of Johnson County, IN.  From these findings, culturally tailored programs will be designed and implemented.

Learning Areas:

Diversity and culture
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the relationship between migration trauma and mental health outcomes Discuss the outcomes associated with migration trauma Explain how depression, alcohol abuse, and domestic violence interact Name experiences of immigrant Hispanics served by the community partner Name personal, familial, or other community characteristics that protect these men from negative mental health outcomes

Keyword(s): Immigrant Health, Mental Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been the co-PI and community lead on this project since it's inception. Through my work at Esperanza Ministries, I am well-integrated into the community and serve as the research team's community expert.
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.