A University-Community Partnership to Develop a Culturally Responsive School Intervention for Black Adolescents with Social Anxiety

Carrie Masia Warner, Melissa Escobar, Hannah Thomas, Talita Ahmed, Ifeanyichukwu Ndubuisi, Laura Perrone, Samantha Coyle-Eastwick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Social anxiety disorder (SAD), a highly prevalent and impairing psychological condition in adolescents, is characterized by persistent fear of social and performance situations. Existing evidence suggests that racism and discrimination may heighten risk for SAD and present barriers to treatment in Black youth. Yet, intervention research on SAD in Black adolescents is virtually nonexistent. This paper discusses the development of the first culturally responsive, school-based intervention for SAD in Black adolescents, referred to as Interacting and Changing our Narratives (ICON). Following recommendations by Castro et al. (Ann Rev Clin Psychol 6(1):213–239, 2010), a multiple stage process was used to adapt an empirically based, school intervention for SAD to be culturally responsive to the unique lived experiences of Black teenagers. Utilizing a university-community-school partnership, key stakeholders, including content area experts, school personnel, caregivers and students, were invited to participate in this process. Their recommendations guided the modifications, and were clearly reflected in the newly developed intervention. Initial piloting showed high acceptability and feasibility of ICON, and informed further revisions prior to a controlled trial. This adaptation process highlights the significant value of learning directly from the community for which an intervention is being developed.

Original languageEnglish
JournalSchool Mental Health
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2024

Keywords

  • Black adolescents
  • Community engagement
  • Culturally responsive intervention
  • School-based intervention
  • Social anxiety disorder

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