Journal of Youth Studies

January 2011

Volume 14 . Issue No. 1

Serial No. 27


Feature : Trends in Adolescent Mental Health

Overview of Adolescent Mental Health Problems in Hong Kong - Patricia E. CHOI Se Fong HUNG
Patricia E. CHOI
Associate Consultant, Kwai Chung Hospital
Se Fong HUNG
Hospital Chief Executive, Kwai Chung Hospital

[Abstract] Concern is growing over the rise of adolescent mental health problems in Hong Kong. An estimated 16% of Chinese adolescents have psychiatric disorders, and there has also been an alarming increase in youth suicide and substance abuse. But despite the substantial evidence for emerging adolescent mental health problems, many of the mental health needs of adolescents remain unmet. Key challenges to addressing mental health needs include a lack of resources in the healthcare system, a shortage of manpower, the stigma associated with mental disorders, and a lack of clear policy to revamp our existing services and to bring organized quality mental health care to our patients.
[Keywords] adolescence; psychiatric disorders; suicide; substance abuse; tiered system
Current Situation and Service for Young People Suffering from Early Psychosis in Hong Kong - J. Q. XU Christy L. M. HUI Gloria H. Y. WONG Jennifer Y. M. TANG May M. L. LAM Cindy P. Y. CHIU Eric Y. H. CHEN
J. Q. XU
Christy L. M. HUI
Gloria H. Y. WONG
Jennifer Y. M. TANG
May M. L. LAM
Cindy P. Y. CHIU
Eric Y. H. CHEN
Department of Psychiatry, The University of Hong Kong

[Abstract] This article outlines the current development and major concerns surrounding early psychosis among young people in Hong Kong. It begins by describing the specialized early intervention services available since 2001, then highlights some important, Hong Kong-derived data so as to enrich our understanding of the needs of this particular group of patients. The latest public awareness programmes designed to reduce stigma in the general public are also discussed. In the conclusion, a future plan for service development is suggested based on the evaluation of the current early intervention services in Hong Kong.
[Keywords] youth psychosis; case management; early detection; early intervention; public awareness
Overview of Service Models and Treatment Strategies for Adolescent Addictive Behaviours - Siu Man HSU Wai Kwok LUK Cecilia K. K. NG
Siu Man HSU
Supervisor, Youth Wellness Centre, The Hong Kong Federation of Youth Groups
Wai Kwok LUK
Unit In-Charge, Jockey Club Jat Min S.P.O.T., The Hong Kong Federation of Youth Groups
Cecilia K. K. NG
Project Officer, NetWise Support Centre for Families, The Hong Kong Federation of Youth Groups

[Abstract] The problem of adolescent addictive behaviours has aroused public concern in recent years. This article outlines different perspectives and models in perceiving these behaviours. Quoting examples, it also introduces a new treatment model in promoting the “Wellness” of one-being using a theoretical base from the bio-psychosocial perspective.
[Keywords] addiction; wellness; bio-psychosocial model
Outcome Study of School Programmes for Reducing Stigma and Promoting Mental Health - Sania S. W. YAU Katrina H. W. PUN Jessica P. S. TANG
Sania S. W. YAU
Katrina H. W. PUN
Jessica P. S. TANG
New Life Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association

[Abstract] Although stigma towards mental illness creates barriers that hinder help-seeking, social integration, and recovery, target-specific stigma-reduction programmes are scarce. This paper presents the preliminary findings on a stigma-reduction and mental-health-promotion project designed for young students in secondary schools. The results indicate significant alleviation of stigma towards mental illness across 1,040 students aged 12-19 participating in an eco-tour, which involved an interactive learning activity with people in recovery, and the school-based Health Link Green Club. Participants in the eco-tour also reported decreased concerns over self-stigma linked to seeking help from professionals when facing mental health problems. Qualitative data generated from participants also revealed changes in attitude towards people with mental illness.
[Keywords] stigma; mental illness; youth
The Development Trends, Theories, and Perspectives on Substance Abuse and Psychiatric Comorbidity (Dual Diagnosis) in Adolescents - Blanka C. C. KWAN Kam-shing YIP
Blanka C. C. KWAN
Doctoral Student, Department of Applied Social Sciences, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
Kam-shing YIP
Professor, Department of Applied Social Sciences, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

[Abstract] The co-occurrence of mental illness and substance abuse is among the most prevalent mental disorders worldwide. It has become more significant in the United States, Europe, and Hong Kong, and it presents complex issues for both mental health and substance abuse practitioners. This paper explores the historical and conceptual issues on dual diagnosis. In addition, different perspectives on dual diagnosis are crucial for developing public policies and programs to address client needs on the road to recovery. The dominant view on dual diagnosis has been the medical perspective. This paper describes three more perspectives: moralistic, psychosocial risk, and phenomenological. This broader view on dual diagnosis will benefit both policy and service development for this population.
[Keywords] dual diagnosis; psychiatric comorbidity; substance abuse; mental disorders; adolescent
Mental Health Community Support Services for Adolescents - Wing Hoi LAI Hui Fang LIN
Wing Hoi LAI
Service Head, Youth and Community Service, Caritas-Hong Kong
Hui Fang LIN
Project/Research Officer, Youth and Community Service, Caritas-Hong Kong

[Abstract] Adolescent mental health has become an important issue for social workers and policy advocates around the world. This article gives an overview of the mental health community support services provided to adolescents by the Caritas Youth and Community Service. The agency’s values, intervention strategies, and social worker roles are discussed, as well as the problems and issues involved in delivering services. Finally, suggestions are offered for the future development of support services to promote the healthy development of adolescents.
[Keywords] adolescent; mental health; community support; rehabilitation service
The Analysis, Prevention, and Intervention of Youth Mental and Emotional Health Issues--From the Perspective of Positive Psychology - Anthony K. K. TONG Priscillia H. Y. CHIU
Anthony K. K. TONG
Clinical Psychologist, Department of Clinical Psychology, Kowloon East Cluster, Hospital Authority Chairman, United Centre of Emotional Health and Positive Living
Priscillia H. Y. CHIU
Registered Social Worker, United Centre of Emotional Health and Positive Living

[Abstract] Mental health and emotional problems are more prevalent among youths nowadays due to changes in family structure, peer relationships, information technology, working environments, and the education system. Although traditional psychology provides a number of effective ways to handle emotional problems, these strategies are usually problem and symptom oriented. This article discusses and suggests new ways of treating and preventing mental health problems among youths using a strength-oriented positive psychology approach.
[Keywords] youth; mental health; stress; positive psychology
Online Suicide-related Information in Hong Kong: Perspectives from Youth Suicide Prevention - Qijin CHENG
PhD Candidate, Department of Social Work and Social Administration, The University of Hong Kong

[Abstract] This paper systematically examines suicide-related information on Hong Kong websites based on a review of the challenges and opportunities presented by the Internet for youth suicide prevention. It discusses potential influences from these websites and ways we can cope with them. The paper anticipates providing a benchmark for further research and practice on online suicide prevention in Hong Kong.
[Keywords] Internet; website; suicide prevention; youth; Hong Kong
Mental Health Promotion and Treatment for Adolescents: A School-Community Model - Chung-Yi HU
Chung-Yi HU
Department of Guidance and Counseling, National Changhua University of Education

[Abstract] This paper analyzes the mental health of adolescents in Taiwan and reviews the literature on “resilience” and mental health of at-risk adolescents. The author suggests that different professional practitioners should be integrated into the mental health team. Practitioners should connect school and community resources, and apply a “school-community model” to mental health promotion and treatment for adolescents.
[Keywords] adolescent; mental health; resilience; school-community model
The Application of Guided Imagery to Reduce High School Students’ Test Anxiety - Yin-Hsing TSENG Meng Ling WANG
Yin-Hsing TSENG
Associate Professor, Department of Counseling, National Chiayi University
Meng Ling WANG
School Counselor, Aletheia University

[Abstract] The purpose of this study was to explore the theoretical basis of applying guided imagery techniques, such as designing a guided imagery programme, to reduce students’ test anxiety. The authors hope to provide researchers and practitioners with a feasible programme to use in related areas. The core of the training programme includes progressive relaxation training, guided imagery, and positive self-talk. It is hypothesized that students will reduce text anxiety by practicing the skills learned in the programme.
[Keywords] high school students; test anxiety; guided imagery

Pan-Chinese Societies Exchange : The Phenomenon of "Non-Marrying" Youth

Not Yet Married--The Implications of Meanings of Marriage on Youths in Singapore
Associate Professor, Department of Sociology, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, National University of Singapore

[Abstract] Marriage is a social construct that takes on different meanings as societies develop and mature. To understand why people get married, it is important that we understand what marriage means. This paper will discuss the social transformation of marriage in Asia using Singapore as a case study. To examine two demographic trends- delayed marriage, and the increasing proportion of people who remain single - this discourse also explores the constraints imposed by contradictions between traditional norms and modern expectations. In the midst of these ideological challenges, there are important implications for the practice of marriage among younger Singaporeans. We see that while the institution of marriage continues to be held in high esteem, changing expectations of what marriage should be poses barriers for time-strapped young adults in their search for the ideal spouse.
[Keywords] marriage ideology; spouse selection; social transformation
A Review of the Problem of Chinese “On the Shelf” - Xiao-tian FENG De-feng MA Xiao-lu WANG
Xiao-tian FENG
Professor, Department of Sociology, Nanjing University
De-feng MA
Associate Professor, Department of Sociology, Soochow University
Xiao-lu WANG
Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology, Nanjing Agriculture University

[Abstract] In recent years, the “on the shelf” phenomenon has become increasingly prominent in China. Even as the issue is gradually entering public awareness, many scholars have begun studying the matter. Reviewing the research achievements on the topic in mainland China over the past 5 years, the paper discusses the definition of “on the shelf,” the causes of the phenomenon, its social impact, and countermeasures in response.
[Keywords] “on the shelf” issue; social impact; response path
“Single Noble” or “Single Social Harm” --A Phenomenal Exploration of Taiwanese Unmarried Adults - Jing-Houng KUO Kai-Li HUNG Yi-Chuan PAI
Jing-Houng KUO
Professor and Chairman, Department of Social Welfare, Chinese Culture University
PhD, Institute of Adult Education, Kaoshiung Normal University
Yi-Chuan PAI
Associate Researcher, Mainland Affairs Council, The Executive Yuan

[Abstract] Being single is a rapidly growing social phenomenon in Taiwan. As a result of various life courses and experiences between traditional and contemporary society facing social change, the single are presently developing more diversified and flexible perspectives than before, whether they are voluntarily single or not. This paper describes the phenomenon of being single in Taiwan by looking at marital attitudes, related factors resulting in being single, and the challenges of being single in order to comprehend other perspectives toward marriage in Chinese society.
[Keywords] Taiwan; the voluntarily unmarried; single; marital attitudes; self-identity
Research on Youth Marriage Attitudes in Macao - Min Yi LI Wai In AO IEONG
Min Yi LI
Vice-Director, Board of Editors, General Association of Chinese Students - Macau
Director, Board of Editors, General Association of Chinese Students – Macau

[Abstract] Marriage is a very important part of our life and culture. Marriage between a man and a woman allows human reproduction to happen. It also contributes to social stability and harmony. Undeniably, economic development and changes in social values have influenced the attitudes of young people towards marriage. They are now tending to get married at a relatively older age or are even refusing to marry. In this paper, we examine the marriage attitudes of youth in Macao and look at how the government is reacting to this issue.
[Keywords] late marriage; nonmarrying; starting a family; setting up a residence

Professional Exchange

Socioeconomic Factors Affecting the Sustainability of Nigerian Rural Young People on the Farm: Implications for Extension - D. O. TORIMIRO A. A. OLUBORODE B. O. LAWAL V. O. OKORIE
Department of Agricultural Extension and Rural Development, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria
Institute of Agricultural Research and Training, Moor Plantation, Ibadan, Nigeria
Department of Agricultural Extension and Rural Development, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria

[Abstract] The study investigated perceived production needs and socioeconomic factors affecting the sustainability of the participation of rural youth in crop farming in Ogun State, Nigeria. A structured interview schedule was used to elicit information from 353 rural young people involved in crop farming, who were randomly and proportionately selected across 8 farming communities. The results showed that farm inputs were the greatest production need. Credit facilities, subsidy of farm inputs, incentives, recognition on the job, provision of a drinkable water supply, and an electricity supply were the major needs driving rural young people’s sustained participation in crop farming. Significant relationships also existed between production needs and some of the characteristics of rural youth. The study recommends improvement of living conditions in rural areas through the provision of social amenities as a way of retaining young people in farming. It also proposes the design of an extension programme which will encourage a “back to school” approach among the out-of-school rural young people, and the need for gender-sensitive extension delivery.
[Keywords] rural youths; production needs; socioeconomic factors; sustainability, crop-farming activities
Status of Electronic Communication Skills among Educated Young People of the Tharu Tribe - Subhash C. VERMA
Subhash C. VERMA
Department of Sociology, Government Post Graduate College, Rudrapur (Uttrakhand), India

[Abstract] This paper describes the status of global communication and connectivity among the educated young people of the Tharu tribe. Tharu students (32 male, 18 female) selected from various villages completed a questionnaire designed to gather information about their awareness and knowledge of global communication. Information about Internet use, social networking, chatting tools, and online communities was collected from the questionnaire and from the Internet. Analyses revealed that the poor global connectivity of the Tharu tribe was largely a result of their reserved and shy nature. This conclusion is limited to the Indian Tharus, as the Nepalese Tharus have more experience with Internet use and direct links to people in outside communities than do the Indian Tharus. This is why Nepalese Tharus are doing their jobs at a global level, but Indian Tharus are still struggling for their basic necessities such as food and medicine in this era of globalization.
[Keywords] Tharu; Indian; Nepali; youth; communication