Small groups program for preventing violence and promoting healthy relationships to be adapted for vulnerable youth
Wednesday, February 13, 2019
Dr. Claire Crooks and her team are pleased to announce they have received $5 million in funding from the Public Health Agency of Canada.
The project, a healthy relationships approach to violence prevention and mental health promotion with vulnerable youth will work over the next five years to address gaps in the area of violence prevention and mental health promotion programming for under-served populations. The project will develop, implement, and evaluate programming for high-risk youth, LGBT2Q+ youth, Indigenous youth, and newcomer youth.
Programming will be adapted from the Healthy Relationships Plus (HRP) Program, an evidence-informed small-group program that promotes skills and protective factors required to prevent gender-based violence.
The focus of the funding is on teen dating violence prevention; however, the positive youth development approach taken by the HRP promotes positive relationship behaviours and prevents problematic substance use. Dr. Crooks comments, “Our programming has been shown to reduce teen dating violence, but its impact is much broader. Our positive youth development approach gives youth the skills they need to develop healthy relationships, improve their mental health, and minimize problematic substance use.”
The funding will allow for scale-up and evaluation of program training in Ontario, Alberta, and Northwest Territories to serve under-served populations by implementing the tailored original HRP to meet the needs of these various in-need groups. Several mixed methods research components will contribute to building the field by addressing important gaps in current knowledge. National collaborators outside of province- and territory-specific areas will offer training, resources, and knowledge mobilization activities to other service providers and educators from coast-to-coast-to-coast.
The project is set to engage more than 2,600 youth (in the evidence-informed programming), and provide training and resources to 540 facilitators and 875 pre-service educators.
To learn more about this project, click here.
For the official news release, click here.