Improving understanding of child resilience
Avdagic, E., Wade, C., McDonald, M., McCormack, D., Dakin, P., Macvean, M., Hayes, L., Phan, T. (2020). Resilience in young children: A Delphi study to reach consensus on definitions, measurement and interventions to build resilience. Early Child Development and Care. doi: 10.1080/03004430.2018.1556211
In the absence of agreement about child resilience, this study used a Delphi procedure with 32 experts in child development to reach agreement about child resilience. According to participants child resilience is best defined as a process whereby a child develops the capacity to adapt when experiencing adversity, although the experience of adversity is not essential to developing resilience. Resilience is multiply determined and can be learned. Consensus was not reached regarding measurement of resilience, but participants endorsed principles to guide measurement. Multiple intervention options were endorsed, with the agreement that both child and environment be targeted. This study provides directions for improving understanding and measurement of child resilience, and will guide practice by professionals working with families to promote child resilience.
The ‘Children’s Resilience Research Project’ reported in this paper was funded by beyondblue.
This study describes the first part of a multi-phase project conducted by the Parenting Research Centre and the Australian Research Alliance for Children and Youth who were funded by beyondblue to develop a Practice Guide containing a set of recommendations that will assist professionals to develop interventions that promote resilience in children (0–12 years of age). The ‘Children’s Resilience Research Project’ aimed to consolidate evidence for validated measures of resilience in children, and effective interventions for child resilience. The authors wish to thank the members of the Expert Panel who participated in the Delphi process for the contribution of their valuable time and knowledge. Members of the Project’s Taskforce are also acknowledged for their expertise and guidance: Ann Sanson, Andrew Martin, Brett Mc Dermott, Rebecca Wright, Craig Olsson, Gillian Calvert, Joe Tucci, Linda Gilmore, Marc De Rosnay, Ron Rapee, and Susan Spence. In addition to the authors, other project team members are also acknowledged for their input to the Children’s Resilience Research Project: Melinda Polimeni, Charlene Smith, Jacob Wray, Warren Cann, Fiona Shackleton and Cathy Bent. The project was granted ethics approval from the Parenting Research Centre Human Research Ethics Committee, HREC App 37 (Melbourne, Australia).