Journal of Child and Family Studies

, Volume 27, Issue 5, pp 1629–1639 | Cite as

Happy Family Kitchen II: Participants’ Perspectives of a Community-based Family Intervention

  • Joanna T. W. Chu
  • Henry C. Y. Ho
  • Moses Mui
  • Alice Wan
  • Sunita M. Stewart
  • Tai Hing Lam
  • Sophia S. Chan
Original Paper


This qualitative study describes participants' experiences with a community-based family intervention. Guided by a positive psychology framework, the brief intervention was designed to enhance positive communication among family members using cooking and dining as a platform. Our interest was in understanding perceptions of benefits and barriers, with the intention of improving future development of communitybased family programs. Purposive sampling was used to recruit focus group participants from those who had participated in the family programs. Overall, 10 focus groups including 65 participants were conducted from April to July 2013. Thematic analysis of the focus groups suggested that the intervention was effective in promoting positive communication, increasing the use of age-appropriate parenting practices, and promoting quality family mealtime. These changes in turn led to perceived positive outcomes by our participants, including a sense of happiness and enhanced family relationship. Cultural and gender beliefs were identified as challenges and are important to consider for future family interventions. Time constraint was further highlighted as an important consideration both in the context of integrating skills into the family routine as well as a barrier to participation in family programs. Our findings add to the small but steadily increasing body of knowledge, especially from qualitative studies, on the effectiveness of brief family interventions.


Qualitative Family intervention Family meal Positive psychology Participants' perspectives 


Author Contributions

J.T.W.C. lead the development of the paper, conducted data analyses, and wrote the paper. H.C.Y.H. collaborated with the writing of the paper and data analyses. M.M. and A.W. designed and oversaw the management of the study. S.M.S. collaborated in the writing and editing of the paper. T.H.L. and S.S.C. provided feedback on the design of the study and write up of the paper.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

Ethics approval was obtained from the Institutional Review Board of the University of Hong Kong/Hospital Authority Hong Kong West Cluster (UW 12-502). All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institution.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joanna T. W. Chu
    • 1
    • 2
  • Henry C. Y. Ho
    • 2
    • 3
  • Moses Mui
    • 4
  • Alice Wan
    • 2
  • Sunita M. Stewart
    • 5
  • Tai Hing Lam
    • 2
  • Sophia S. Chan
    • 6
  1. 1.National Institute for Health Innovation, School of Population HealthThe University of AucklandAucklandNew Zealand
  2. 2.School of Public HealthThe University of Hong KongHong KongChina
  3. 3.Department of PsychologyThe Education University of Hong KongHong KongChina
  4. 4.Service DevelopmentThe Hong Kong Council of Social ServiceHong KongChina
  5. 5.Department of PsychiatryThe University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at DallasDallasUSA
  6. 6.School of NursingThe University of Hong KongHong KongChina

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