Factors Inhibiting Recovery

Development and testing of a peer-run, psycho-educational intervention to foster competence to cope with stigma and discrimination

Zlatka Russinova, Ph.D.
Project Director


The purpose of this project is to develop and pilot-test the efficacy of a peer-run psychoeducational group intervention intended to foster mental health consumers’ competence to cope with stigma and discrimination. This intervention will be designed for delivery at outpatient mental health and rehabilitation settings and consumer-run programs and centers. The proposed intervention will focus on increasing consumers’ awareness of the diverse manifestations of stigma and discrimination and on empowering them to cope with different types of stigma through an array of adaptive coping strategies.

Click here to learn more about how Photovoice has been used as part of this intervention.

Several sources of empirical data will inform the development of the intervention, which will consist of a user’s manual, an instructor’s guide and a written “train-the-trainer” protocol. Once the intervention is developed, the efficacy of this intervention will be pilot-tested through a small randomized controlled trial. Efficacy of the intervention in regards to stigma coping skills, level of self-stigma, empowerment, self-efficacy and depression will be established in comparison to a wait-list control group and key intervention parameters will be estimated in preparation for a larger randomized controlled trial. The development of the proposed intervention is expected to make a significant contribution to combating stigma as a major barrier to the recovery of people with psychiatric disabilities.