Project Spotlight: St Michael’s Hospital/ Unity Health Toronto

Our Kids’ Health

Expanding the delivery of a multilingual parental mental health promotion program via social media

WHO

Primary Audience:
Parents, families, and children of eight large racial and cultural-linguistic groups in Canada:

  • Black-African-Caribbean
  • Arabic
  • Mandarin
  • Cantonese
  • Tagalog
  • Latinx
  • Ukrainian
  • Inuktitut

Secondary Audience:
Pediatricians and primary practitioners providing care and support to parents and families from the eight identified racial and cultural-linguistic groups.

WHAT

Objectives

  • Empower parents from BIPOC communities impacted by COVID-19
  • Create supportive virtual parenting communities to improve parenting stress and competence.
  • Share free culturally, relevant evidence-based parenting resources for healthcare professionals to share with their patients to promote mental health.

HOW

Using a community-driven approach, this project will:

  • Collaborate with key community leaders and/or community-integrated partner agencies to adapt and translate an existing core curriculum that covers a range of topics (e.g., parental well-being, child development, growth and nutrition, general health).
  • Share the adapted curriculum via social media platforms in a variety of mediums (e.g., video, infographics).
  • Provide healthcare professionals with an online evidence-based digital library of parenting resources.
  • Evaluate the impact of the program on parents’ sense of empowerment, confidence in parenting ability and overall parent stress.

WHERE

Settings

  • Online
  • Hospital
  • Community

Implementation sites

  • National

WHY

      • BIPOC families reported feelings of stress, disengagement, and social isolation as they coped with the new challenges of raising families presented during the pandemic.
      • BIPOC communities experienced negative impacts related to cultural identity and disenfranchisement due to systemic and interpersonal racism exacerbated by COVID-19.
      • These experienced stressors can result in mistrust in Eurocentric systems, including mental health care.
      • Research indicates that when individuals in marginalized communities receive health information from professionals who share their lived experience – including racial identity and language – there is greater trust, uptake, and application of health behaviours.

 

In the words of the project team members

“We know that when individuals receive health information and content from people who look like them who share some lived experience with them, there’s greater trust, there’s greater rapport and there’s a higher likelihood of being able to impact long term health outcomes.”

Key protective factors

  • Parenting skills
  • Cultural connectedness and identity
  • Access to health and support services
  • Positive family relationships

Key approaches

  • Participatory
  • Culturally safe
  • Equity-based
  • Trauma-informed
  • Strengths-based