Practicing in a person-centred environment – self-help groups in psycho-social rehabilitation
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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OriginalversjonLandstad, B. J., Hedlund, M. & Kendall, E. (2020). Practicing in a person-centred environment - self-help groups in psycho-social rehabilitation. Disability and Rehabilitation. doi: 10.1080/09638288.2020.1789897
Aim: The increasing prevalence of chronic conditions and impairments in the population is putting new demands on health and rehabilitation services. Research on self-help groups suggest that participation in these groups might have a positive impact on people who are struggling with chronic illnesses or disabilities. In this study, we explore person-centred support in which participants in self-help groups are undergoing rehabilitation to develop their knowledge, skills and confidence necessary to handle life’s challenges. Method: The design is exploratory, analysing data from informant interviews and focus groups (a total of 32 participants) using a Grounded Theory inspired approach to analyse. The participants were rehabilitation clients aged between 20 and 60 years; eight were men and twenty-six were women. Results: Three main categories emerged as being important self-help processes that were likely to promote positive rehabilitation outcomes: (1) Learning and practicing safely, (2) A refuge from expectations, (3) Internal processes that accentuate the positives. Conclusion: Peer support delivered through the structured self-help environment can facilitate the development of new self-awareness, promote acceptance and adjustment, facilitate the establishment of new skills and enable transfer of learning to new environments, including the workplace.