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Exploring the impact of group work and mentoring for multiple heritage children's self-esteem, well-being and behaviour

By D. Phillips, T. Hagan, E. Bodfield, K. Woodthorpe and M. Grimsley


Findings are reported from a study of an innovative Multiple Heritage Service in Sheffield (UK) which provides, inter alia, individual mentoring for young people and school-based group sessions on cultural heritage, dealing with racism and enhancing well-being. Groupwork, undertaken between November 2005 and December 2006, was evaluated by a before/after design with 43 children aged from eight to fifteen attending five different groups (response rate 77 per cent), using three well-established and validated measures. There were improvements on the Rosenberg Self-esteem Scale from 31.415 to 33.024 (p =0.005) with more improvement among younger children and boys (p=0.004 and p=0.001); and well-being as measured by the GHQ12 improved from 1.460 to 0.8378 (p=0.111) with more improvement among older children (p=0.026). On the third measure, of problem behaviour (the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire) there was an improvement from 12.4 to 12.1 (p=0.716) but there was no improvement at all for girls. Mentoring was evaluated by telephone interviews between June and October 2006 with 14 mothers whose children had just completed, or were nearing completion of, mentoring (response rate 70 per cent). Overall the mothers’ evaluations were highly positive: two-thirds commended the service on the positive impact on their children’s well-being and happiness (including all the mothers of daughters); a half reported positive impacts on identity; mothers commended the positive role model effect same-sex mentors had on their children’s behaviour; but only a third said mentoring had boosted their children’s self-esteem.\u

Publisher: Blackwell Publishing
Year: 2008
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