Barriers and Challenges in a Peer Support Program for Family Caregivers of Children with Emotional and Behavioral Disorders
Cottrill, Sara Marie
As systems of care become more prevalent for children and adolescents with mental health needs, there are an increasing number of peer support programs available for their family caregivers. Though these programs have shown some success, further research is warranted in determining how these programs can best serve families. Specifically, there is a lack of research on such programs in the area of barriers and challenges to program success and implementation. This thesis is a qualitative study using interviews with family caregivers (n=13)and peer supporters (n=8) in two peer support program for families of children with serious emotional disorders. Barriers and challenges (from the point of view of both family caregivers and peer supporters) were coded first by theme and then by ecological level. Implications of these findings include a better understanding of these programs' general functioning as well as specific recommendations for program improvement. Additionally, there are broader implications surrounding systems of care.