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Mental Health Essay

971 words - 4 pages

Addressing many of the determinants such as income and housing (Mikkonen, & Raphael, 2010) are effective ways to deal with prevention of mental health problems in younger children. These determinants are linked (based on class discussion) and form the underlying grounds for maltreatment and neglect leading to increased mental health problems in young children and ensuing foster care placement. Although this is significant, this paper has emphasized the growing number of young children already residing in foster care with increasing mental health needs. Early childhood development directly influences young children, especially ones in foster care. The current initiatives being implemented attempt organizational change yet occur at the interpersonal level and fail to address the gaps identified earlier. As with my experience at the Children’s Cottage, interventions were at the interpersonal level. While the caregivers had early childhood training, many were lacking in how to provide proper mental health care to the foster children that frequented the facility. In depth training on the complex issues that foster children face, such as maltreatment and neglect was overlooked. Therefore, in my opinion, building upon these interventions and applying them to an organizational level allows for the reduction and or resolution of those gaps. The organizational level has the ability to promote health on a wider scale (K. Raine, personal communication, November 15, 2013). Many families use organizations such as the Cottage thus, becoming prime opportunity for collectively changing/improving mental health for all young foster children.
A strategy with the potential to achieve this is through a collaborative approach focused early childhood development. In an evaluation of Early Childhood Care and Education Programs (ECCE) by Thomas, Boyle, Micucci, & Cocking (2002), it was found that high quality programs included many factors in particular participation among parents and children, and inclusion of comprehensive services. In other words, effectiveness of these programs depend on the relationship between parents and children as well as on those services directly related to their lives. Based on nursing experience, these programs require inter-disciplinary and inter-sectoral participation to advance beyond status quo and address the barriers. A key factor among these relationships is communication. Positive relationships with the ability to problem solve are dependent on keeping communication lines open as well as on actively listening to one another. Similar to the interpersonal level, trust is at the core of these relationships. It provides the foundation for successful collaboration, and paves the way for mutual learning in an effort to create consensus on the issue (J. Springett, personal communication, November 22, 2013).
Evidence of this strategy at work is found in Calgary’s Collaborative Mental Health Care (CMHC) program. This...

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