Meaningful Networks Model (MNM)

Description

MNM = Meaningful Networks Model

The focus of this project is the creation of the Meaningful Networks Model (MNM) program curriculum to enhance social network development and community participation among young adults who are either experiencing or at risk for serious mental health conditions, and who are also expected to have limited support networks due to histories of out-of-home placement. For example, these may be young people with SMHC who: have histories of out-of-home placement through the mental health, child welfare, and/or juvenile justice systems; are currently in group placement or residential treatment, and are expected to exit from these living situations into independence; and/or are relatively socially isolated or overly self-reliant (for example, those who largely rely on paid providers for support, or those with lived experiences in "the system" that lead them to reject formal support services).

The MNM curriculum will use group-based skills training in understanding and using support networks, maintaining positive relationships, and making new connections to enhance personal well-being and support success in a range of domains. The program will include near-peer mentoring and peer support components, and well as supported community participation activities structured to expose young people to new settings and gain familiarity in accessing formal and informal social support resources. Program components will be designed to enhance network-based support, increase community participation, and encourage help-seeking.

In addition to developing the curriculum, the project team is designing the program model with the input of a group of advisors with lived experience of system involvement, and iteratively testing the feasibility of this innovative model for future efficacy testing.