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Exploration of Psychological Well-Being, Resilience, Ethnic Identity, and Meaningful Events Among a Group of Youth in Northern England: An Autobiographical Narrative Intervention Pilot Study


Caroline S. Clauss-Ehlers*   Pages 1 - 18 ( 18 )


Background. Autobiographical narrative (i.e., process through writing or story telling where one recalls life experiences and their impact on identity) has been found to effectively help adolescents cope with a range of medical and psychological issues.

Objective. The current study addressed the overall preliminary research question: How does implementing an autobiographical narrative approach promote resilience, psychological well- being, and ethnic identity among adolescents? A secondary study aim was to explore how central the memories evoked by each workshop were to participant identity. The study’s third goal was to promote life skill development and self-awareness through participation in the autobiographical narrative intervention.

Methods. The intervention incorporated a community-based participatory research (CBPR) framework in its partnership with a community centre in Northern England. The intervention consisted of an 8-week autobiographical program with youth participants from working and lower middle class backgrounds. Socioeconomic status was operationalized by self-report on a demographic data sheet completed by participants.

Results. Analyses indicated that participants viewed the events discussed in the 8-week program as being more central to their lives after their participation. Maladaptive coping appeared to decrease after participation in the intervention.

Conclusion. Results suggest interventions that incorporate an autobiographical narrative approach within a CBPR framework may promote positive outcomes among adolescents with limited economic resources


Resilience, youth, autobiographical narrative, well-being, global mental health


Rutgers University New Brunswick, New Jersey

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