Promoting young people's resilience through enjoyable structured activities

Kristina Usaite, Josh Cameron

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Introduction: A growing body of UK and international policy, research and practice is concerned with understanding how children and young people can develop resilience to respond to adversities. Whilst much research has focused on internal or environmental supports for resilience, this study considered occupational/activity factors - specifically how retired professionals from a range of disciplines used participation in structured activities to help young people. Methods: Five retired health, education and social care professionals participated in individual semi-structured interviews which explored how they used activities to promote the resilience of adolescents in adversity. Narrative data analysis included formulation of core stories and identification of regularly reoccurring themes within and across them. Findings: Active involvement in enjoyable structured activities can enhance young people's and children's resilience by: promoting positive emotional experiences and expression; developing routines, responsibility and roles; enabling constructive relationships and providing therapeutic support. This may enable young people to successfully negotiate future transitions and stressful life events. Although support is vital in this process, participants considered increasing time constraints and financial pressures can compromise this. Conclusion: Enjoyable structured activities can help promote resilience and an occupational perspective can make a significant contribution to resilience research and practice.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBrighton Journal of Research in Health Sciences
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2016

Bibliographical note

© 2016 Brighton Journal of Research in Health Sciences


  • resilience
  • structured activities
  • youth
  • positive emotions


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