Psychoeducation is an approach that combines support and education to help someone understand and manage reactions and emotional and psychological challenges. The aim of psychoeducation is to build the knowledge and reduce stigma and social exclusion related to negative mental health and psychosocial stress. It promotes understanding and healthy coping mechanisms for both individuals and their communities.
These programs focus on promoting protective mechanisms (such as coping skills, building social connections within the class/student groups and giving space for self-reflection and self- expression). Psychoeducation programs often (though not exclusively) involve the use of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) principles. CBT is based on the concept that thoughts, feelings and actions are interrelated, and wellbeing can be promoted by focusing upon these components and interrelations among them. These principles help students develop strategies to solve problems, regulate emotions and establish helpful patterns of thought and behaviour.
Psychoeducation can offer:
- Decrease in posttraumatic symptoms, anxiety levels and depressive symproms
- Enables student engagement
- Promotes confidence and a sense of control
- Encourages social and emotional learning
- Enables young people to make sense of their experiences and cope with their everyday life
- Decrease in loneliness
- Increase in ability to manage emotions
- Increase in awareness of cultural identity (both in country of origin and host country)
- Improvement in resilience