Although surgical repair of fistula is associated with improvements in women’s quality of life and mental health, researchers have found even after being treated surgically to repair their fistula, many women still have difficulty engaging in family and community life. Tracy Gladstone, Ph.D., Senior Research Scientist and Director of the Stone Primary Prevention Initiatives at WCW, traveled to Gondar, Ethiopia where she trained nurses to implement a new evidence-based depression prevention program being piloted at the University of Gondar Fistula Center. After initial planning meetings in Spring 2014, Gladstone and her team conducted onsite interviews in December with clinicians as well as patients who shared their knowledge about fistula; they talked about their current social support and coping strategies and expressed an interest in learning skills to manage their worries and feel better. After developing a protocol, Gladstone returned to Ethiopia in March 2015 and trained the clinicians (pictured below), providing follow-up support via web-based communications as the hospital team readied for implementation. This spring, data from the first two cohorts who took part in the cognitive behavioral therapy program, and from the clinicians who led the initiative at the hospital, have resulted in promising positive outcomes—depression symptom scores decreased substantially. Further program details will be included in the Fall/Winter issue of the Research & Action Report.
Tracy Gladstone, Ph.D., also traveled to Santiago, Chile in April 2015 where she presented at the inaugural symposium on the Prevention and Early Interventions in Mental Health focused on “Prevention of Depression: Translating Research Into Practice.” This is the first version of a series of biennial conferences that aims to develop new and/or updated strategies and action plans, and seek to broaden the support for evidence-based prevention and promotion in mental health in Chile and Latin America; it was organized by the Child And Adolescent Psychiatry Unit, Department of Psychiatry, University of Chile. Gladstone presented on the CATCH-IT program which utilizes an internet-based interactive system to prevent the onset of a depressive episode in at-risk teens.
Peggy McIntosh, Ph.D., founder of the National SEED Project on Inclusive Curriculum (Seeking Educational Equity & Diversity presented at a conference on women’s studies in China and other parts of the world held at Capital Normal University in Beijing, June 26-28, 2015. This program was hosted by The Center for Studies in Chinese Women’s Culture, the Forum on Women’s Literature in Chinese, and the Women’s Literature Commission of the China World Association for Chinese Literatures. McIntosh delivered a keynote speech at the opening ceremony of the conference which focused on women’s studies.
Research & Action Report, Spring/Summer 2015
The Wellesley Centers for Women (WCW) hosted Elizabeth Jaeger, Ph.D., Visiting Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of the Virgin Island (UVI) and Director of Quality Services with the Department of Human Services in the Office of child Care and Regulatory Services in the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI) in February 2015. During her meeting with WCW scholars and staff, she discussed “The Ecological Context of Early Care and Education in the USVI.” Joanne Roberts, Ph.D. and Wendy Wagner Robeson, Ed.D, Senior Research Scientists, traveled to USVI the following month to do training with a research team from UVI on a much-used environmental measure in center-based programs on St. John and St. Thomas.
A delegation from Ashoka University, India visited the Wellesley Centers for Women in May 2015. Madhavi Menon, Ph.D., professor of English at Ashoka; Banita Shastri, Ph.D., Dean of Undergraduate Programs at Ashoka; and Harshbeena Zaveri, Managing Director and President NRB Bearings, Limited, and one of the founders of Ashoka, discussed “Building a Center for Gender and Sexuality Studies in India from the Ground Up,” with colleagues from WCW and Wellesley College.
Research & Action Report, Spring/Summer 2015
The article, “Comparing sexuality communication among offspring of teen parents and adult parents: A different role for extended family,” by Jennifer Grossman, Ph.D.; Allison Tracy, Ph.D.; Amanda Richer, M.A.; and Sumru Erkut, Ph.D., was published in the June 2015 issue of Sexuality Research & Social Policy: A Journal of the NSRC. This report examined teenagers’ sexuality communication with their parents and extended families. It compared who teens of early parents (those who had children when they were adolescents) and teens of later parents (those who were adults when they had children) talk to about sex. Results showed that teens of early (teen) parents were more likely than teens of later (adult) parents to talk with both parents and extended family about sex and less likely than later parents to talk only with parents. These findings indicate that realities of teen sexuality communication for teens of early parents may extend beyond a parent-teen model to include extended family. Extended family involvement in educational outreach is a potential untapped resource to support sexual health for teens of early parents.