Child and Adolescent Social Work Journal

, Volume 31, Issue 1, pp 87–106 | Cite as

School-Based Groups to Support Multiethnic Sexual Minority Youth Resiliency: Preliminary Effectiveness

  • Shelley L. Craig
  • Ashley Austin
  • Lauren B. McInroy


Sexual minority youth (SMY) face multiple challenges as a result of their marginalized sexual and/or gender identities, yet evidence informed programs for the population are absent from the literature. This study describes the pilot research efforts of affirmative supportive safe and empowering talk (ASSET), the first LGBTQ affirmative school-based group counseling intervention created specifically to promote resiliency. In a pilot uncontrolled trial, multiethnic SMY (n = 263) completed measures of self-esteem, social connectedness, and proactive coping at baseline and following completion of the ASSET intervention. Post-intervention analysis using general linear modeling suggests that self-esteem and proactive coping increased significantly across all subgroups, while social connectedness remained constant. ASSET holds promise to enhance the resiliency of SMY in school-based practice settings. Further research should address the effect of ASSET participation on measures of risk and resiliency, and compare outcomes across multiple group interventions.


Gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth Group counseling Resiliency Sexual minority youth Group Intervention 



We are grateful to the amazing youth participants and staff of The Alliance for GLBTQ Youth, as well as to the Children’s Trust of Miami Dade County for funding the youth programs.

Funding Source

Research efforts were partially supported by a Social Sciences and Research Council (SSHRC) Institutional Grant (SIG) from the University of Toronto (Fund Number 490723).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shelley L. Craig
    • 1
  • Ashley Austin
    • 2
  • Lauren B. McInroy
    • 1
  1. 1.Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social WorkUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada
  2. 2.School of Social WorkBarry UniversityMiami ShoresUSA

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