Topic:  Peer pressure and influence – its role in hindering and/or supporting resilience – Lorraine Hirst

Resources: You can download Lorraine’s slides.

Session summary: This session will be a ‘romp’ through some research and ideas, ideally with lots of group participation, around the subject of ‘peers’ and young people. Daniel and Wassell (2002) cite ‘peer contact’ as a protective factor in supporting resilience in young people and ‘healthy relationships’ form part of the Mental Health and Resilience Therapy Toolkit (Experience in Mind, Taylor & Hart, 2011). So we know what the answer is, but have we really examined the issue? In an age where binge drinking is rife amongst teenagers, not to mention self-harm, drug abuse, teenage pregnancy and poor sexual health, what is happening in our society and culture in terms of this notion of peer pressure which is hindering good peer support and healthy relationships? If we hold a mirror up to what is happening in our society and communities, then perhaps we can create a space for change…

Biography: Lorraine Hirst is a consultant, coach and facilitator, specialising in emotional resilience. She has a Masters in the Policy and Management of Care Services and 20+ years experience of working in the public sector, children’s services, education and the voluntary sector, mostly in a strategic and developmental capacity (projects, commissioning, research, strategy writing and delivery, training and multi-agency working), and, more recently, in direct delivery of programmes that build emotional resilience for young people, parents, professionals. is the name of the programmes that Lorraine has developed and delivers in the UK and abroad (she recently ran a two day workshop in an International school in Poland on Power and Resilience). Lorraine’s toolkit includes a mix of coaching, provocative therapy, NLP, drama and other techniques which have been developed from evidence-based approaches. Lorraine is increasingly interested in how we build resilience into systems and organisations, as her current training is in Educational and Organisational Transactional Analysis, which informs her work with groups of young people, and begs her to question the organisational and cultural influences that affect our resilience, choices and outcomes.

Most interested: Young people; parents; practitioners; teachers; researchers. Anyone interested in young people, although peer pressure happens at all ages so may be of interest to those who work with adults too.

This session took place on Thursday 21 February 2013.

The Resilience Forum is for ANYBODY (with a pulse!) involved with or interested in resilience research!

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