University Of Tasmania
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An evaluation of aspects of GROW, a self-help organization

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posted on 2023-05-27, 17:24 authored by Paz, Josefina Medrano de la
The changing perspectives in mental health care have paved the way for the emergence and proliferation of self-help groups (SHGs) in the delivery of mental health care. Studies of the efficacy of such groups have been limited and have led to conflicting results. The present preliminary investigation focused upon Grow, a prominent self-help organization. The project aimed to describe the demographic, personal and psychiatric characteristics of Grow attenders, and to investigate possible changes in symptomatology and social network as a function of time and attendance. The subjects were 62 Grow attenders who were representative of the state population of Grow members. The General Health Questionnaire (Goldberg, 1967), the Social Environment Questionnaire (Winefield, 1979), the Personality and Social Network Adjustment Scale (Clark, 1968) and a number of visual analogue scales related to issues such as perceived efficacy of Grow were administered weekly over a six week period. General findings indicated Grow attenders to be predominantly female, 40 to 60 years old, married and from the middle occupational status group. Attendance at Grow tended to be irregular and the most common reason for attendance was to seek help for emotional problems. From a community mental health perspective most had sought help before joining Grow and many were still receiving psychiatric assistance. Previous and current help received from outside Grow tended to be viewed as inadequate. Over the period of study there was an improvement in psychological/psychiatric adjustment of Grow members but no significant change in social support networks. Only those who attended Grow regularly evidenced an improvement in social support. The need for caution when discussing causality was stressed. A number of methodological and logistical problems were identified and more complex evaluation research designs were described for future consideration.


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Copyright the Author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s). Thesis (M. Psych.)--University of Tasmania, 1989. Bibliography: leaves 62-74.

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