One of the major goals of our center is to provide preventive interventions to the community to improve the lives of children, youth, and their families.
Current Community-Focused Prevention Projects
Promoting Positive Youth Development for Rural Adolescent Girls in Turkey
This project aims to identify the psychosocial needs of disadvantaged 12- to 18-year-old rural adolescent girls who live in school residence halls in Northern and Eastern Anatolia regions of the country. Through multimodal assessment (interviews, focus groups, questionnaires, observation), we collect information about developmental needs of youth. We aim to develop a psychoeducational model in schools and their residence halls that would provide services, learning experiences and opportunities to help young rural girls develop life skills and increase their educational as well as vocational aspirations, and their active participation in civic discourse.
Completed Community-Focused Prevention Projects
Dealing with Challenging Child Behaviors in Preschool Classrooms
This prevention project was designed to empower preschool teachers in dealing with challenging child behaviors (e.g., defiance, aggression, withdrawn behavior). The goal of this teacher program was to teach skills in order to promote children’s emotional self-regulation and increase social competence. This psychoeducational program involved four days of intensive teacher training with role plays, videotaped modeling, and group discussions. The content of the training included evidence-based practices reported in early childhood mental health research. Skill building involved teaching functional behavior analysis, increasing teachers’ attention to positive child behaviors, using proactive teaching, and promoting emotional literacy as well as problem solving skills.
Social Skills Training Program for Disadvantaged Preschoolers
This universal prevention program was designed for preschoolers in public schools located in disadvantaged neighborhoods. The goal of the program was to promote preschoolers’ emotioal self-regulation and social skills based on the Incredible Years Child Training program. This weekly program included puppet enactments, role-plays, and a circle time to teach children specific skills such as communication, cooperation, and anger control.
Raising Teachers’ Awareness of Emotions in Classroom Management
This 9-week long prevention project was geared towards elementary school teachers and involved an experiental learning program with psychodrama and cognitive therapy elements. The basic aim of this program was to increase teachers' awareness of their own emotions and core belief structures to help them better understand and respect individual differences in their students.
Educating Teens and Mothers about Female Teen Years
A program to inform both female teens and their mothers on all relevant physical, psychological and social changes that females go through in adolescence was undertaken to run in selected state schools using a group discussion format.
Mentoring Program for Children Who Work on the Streets
Forced migration of the mid 90’s had led to the phenomenon of children working on the streets to supplement family income. Risks associated with children working on the streets were many, one of which was dropping out of school. Thus, a mentoring program was initiated and ran (later became part of the Big Brothers Big Sisters International) that paired trained and supervised Boğaziçi University students with children who worked on the street via partnership with the local community center run by the Department of Social Services.
Rehabilitation Project for Young Refugee Children (1999)
With the collaboration of Social Services of the Ministry of Health and funded by UNICEF, a psychosocial rehabilitation project was designed and implemented for Kosovar children between ages 3 and 12 (N=1800) sheltered at the Kırklareli Refugee Camp.