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Wednesday, June 17 • 11:00am - 12:30pm
Gender & Sexuality - Steve Leventhal, Saima Hirani, Jane March-McDonald, Martine Hébert

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Gender & Sexuality: 

Abstract # 26
Bringing Resilience to the Global Health and Development Community: The Case of Girls First – India
Presenter: Steve Leventhal  Co - Presenters: Jane Gillham, Katherine Leventhal 
Mental Health Interventions Adolescents, Girls, International Development, Global Health, Intervention Today, 600 million girls live in low and middle income countries (LMICs). In part due to intense and entrenched gender-based discrimination, girls in these countries are significantly and almost uniformly less likely than their male counterparts to be educated, employed, and physically healthy.Over the last decade, many prominent actors in global health and development have adopted policies and programs to improve physical health, education, and employability for girls in LMICS (e.g., WHO, World Bank, UNICEF, etc.). However, there is a critical link that is missing: attention to resilience, and in particular, to psychosocial resilience. In this community, few have focused on building social-emotional assets (e.g., persistence, self-efficacy, strong ties with adults, etc.) as a key lever for improving physical health and education for girls.In this presentation we discuss how Girls First–India, a 2013-14 RCT of a combined resilience/adolescent health intervention among 3,400 rural adolescent girls in Bihar, India, has brought resilience into global health and development discussions among foundations and governments. We present strategies we have used in engaging with multiple stakeholders, challenges we have encountered, and lessons we have learned about the synergies of the field of resilience and the fields of global health and development. 

Abstract # 46
Viewing Women’s Resilience through a Gendered Lens:  A Critical Review
Presenter: Saima Hirani Co - Presenters: Gerri Lasiuk, Kathleen Hegadoren
Although it has been the subject of study for several decades, resilience research is beset with definitional and methodological issues that make it difficult to operationalize and measure resilience, compare findings across studies, and perform meta-analyses. In this presentation, we present findings of a critical review of the literature, which was motivated by the hypothesis that current conceptualizations of and methods for measuring resilience lack gender sensitivity. Data for the review was gleaned from electronic searches of CINAHL, MEDLINE, Science Direct, and PubMed using the search terms ‘resilience’, ‘adaptability’, ‘psychological constructs similar to resilience’, ‘women’, ‘gender’, and ‘gender based analyses’. Hand searches of references lists yielded additional literature. Data sources were limited to materials published in the English language between 1979 and 2014. Based on our findings, we argue that most current measures of resilience do not take into account gender-related social and environmental experiences that may contribute to the oft reported higher resilience scores in men. These gaps threaten the quality of evidence regarding women’s resilience and the development of strategies to support resilience in women. These limitations have practical implications for women’s health and healthcare.

Abstract # 50
Negotiating Transition to a ‘Grown Up World’: The Journey to Sexual and Reproductive Health for Unaccompanied Adolescent Asylum Seekers 
Presenter:Jane March-McDonald Co-Presenter: Cathy Brennan
Unaccompanied asylum seekers (UAS) around the world face increased risks in relation to sexual and reproductive health outcomes in the country of asylum due to: the loss of strong supportive structures and social networks, the absence of parental protection, cultural attitudes, poor knowledge of and lack of access to relevant services, as well as the need for these young people to prioritize immediate problems over sexual and reproductive health. Having negotiated the often dangerous and highly challenging journey of seeking asylum in the Western world, the resilience of UAS is clearly evident. How though do they subsequently manage and negotiate the transition from childhood to adulthood, identifying and securing resilient pathways to sexual and reproductive health, in a context marked by transition, uncertainty and cultural alienation? How might the communities they reside in and the available resources, shape their journeys and outcomes? The ethical and methodological challenges of carrying out research with this population are well documented. To identify and understand culturally specific and universal resilient pathways for sexual and reproductive health, we need to successfully engage UAS in research through using new and creative methodologies. Having secured a Worldwide Universities Development Fund grant, we welcome contributions and interest on our venture.

Abstract # 45

The Forgotten Victims Of Child Sexual Abuse: Disclosure And Resilience Features In Male Youth
Presenter: Martine Hébert Co - Presenters: Christine Wekerle, Isabelle Daigneault, Delphine Collin-Vézina
Child sexual abuse is now recognized as an important public health issue. Prevalence estimates reveal that 1 out of five women and 1 out of ten men report experiencing sexual abuse before the age of 18. Yet, sexual abuse and sexual violence against male youth often remains hidden, as male youth are less likely to disclose to anyone and less likely to seek services. Consequently, there are significant gaps in the scholarly literature as to the outcomes and possible resilience of male youth with sexual abuse experiences. Discussants in this panel will highlight findings from their recent studies as to the specific obstacles in disclosing sexual abuse experiences identified by male victims as well as the features associated with resilience in school-aged boys victims of sexual abuse. In addition, resilience characteristics of high school male adolescents experiencing sexual abuse and of child-welfare involved male adolescents experiencing sexual violence in the context of dating relationships will be summarized. This facilitated discussion will offer a unique opportunity to exchange as to the specific challenges in this area of investigation and the design of future investigations and tailored intervention addressing the needs of male youth victims of sexual abuse.

avatar for Gerri Lasiuk

Gerri Lasiuk

Associate Professor, College of Nursing, University of Saskatchewan
avatar for Jane March-McDonald

Jane March-McDonald

Lecturer Public Health/ Programme Lead Specialist Community Public Health Nursing/Researcher, University of southampton
Jane is a nurse, midwife and health visitor and is currently lecturer and programme lead for the Specialist Community Public Health Nursing programme in the Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Southampton. Jane's research interests include: the health and wellbeing of marginalized... Read More →

Martine Hébert

Martine Hébert (Ph.D. in psychology) is professor at the sexology department of Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM). She has training in child development and child clinical psychology as well as a strong background in psychometry. In the past 25 years, her research interests... Read More →
avatar for Steve Leventhal

Steve Leventhal

Executive Director, CorStone
As CorStone’s executive director, Steve Leventhal oversees all strategic planning, program development, external relations, and financial operations for the organization. Prior to joining CorStone, he oversaw strategic alliances, private-public partnerships, marketing and communications... Read More →


Cathy Brennan

Cathy is a Lecturer in Public Health based in the Leeds Institute of Health Sciences and is currently Programme Lead for the Masters in Public Health Programme. Cathy’s research interests include well-being in children and families and how social factors

Delphine Collin-Vezina

Dr. at McGill University Dr. Delphine Collin-Vézina is the Tier II Canadian Child Welfare Research Chair, an Associate Professor in Social Work at McGill University, and the director of the McGill Centre for Research on Children and Families. She is a clinical and developmental... Read More →

Isabelle Daigneault

Dr at Université de Montréal Isabelle Daigneault, (Ph.D. in psychology), clinical psychologist, is an associate professor in the department of psychology at the Université de Montréal. For the past 15 years, her research has focused on child and adolescent sexual assault. She... Read More →

Jane Gillham

Associate Professor at Swarthmore Dr. Jane Gillham is a psychologist, researcher, and educator. She is Associate Professor at Swarthmore College and Research Associate at the University of Pennsylvania’s Positive Psychology Center. Dr. Gillham co-directs the Penn Resiliency Project... Read More →

Dr. Kathleen Hegadoren

Professor at University of Alberta Dr Hegadoren completed her PhD in Medical Sciences in 1995. After completing a postdoctoral fellowship and working as a clinical researcher in mood disorders, she accepted a tenure-track position at the Faculty of Nursing at the University of Alberta... Read More →

Gerri Lasiuk

Associate Profesor at University of Alberta Dr. Gerri Lasiuk is an Associate Professor and Director or the Nursing Simulation Centre in the Faculty of Nursing at the University of Alberta. Her clinical, teaching, and research interest relate to psychiatric/ mental health nursing... Read More →

Katherine Leventhal

Kate Leventhal serves as Research and Program Coordinator for Girls First – India, managing all research efforts for this resilience-based program that helps girls in poverty to improve their circumstances and achieve their dreams. Kate joined CorStone in 2011 after working with... Read More →
avatar for Christine Wekerle

Christine Wekerle

McMaster University
Dr at McMaster University Christine Wekerle, is associate professor at Department of Pediatrics – Faculty of Health Sciences, McMaster University. She is the lead investigator in the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) funded Boys’ and Men’s Health Team grant. Her... Read More →

Wednesday June 17, 2015 11:00am - 12:30pm EDT
Seminar 7 A&A Lower Floor, King's College

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