"Who believes most in me and in my recovery": the importance of families for persons with serious mental illness living in structured community housing

J Soc Work Disabil Rehabil. 2011;10(1):49-65. doi: 10.1080/1536710X.2011.546310.


In this article, the authors report on qualitative findings on the role of family in supporting recovery for mental health consumers living in structured, community housing in a large Canadian city. Despite living separately from families and relying heavily on formal services, residents identified their families more often than mental health professionals, friends, and residential caregivers as those who most believe in them and their recovery. Families supported recovery by providing affection and belonging, offering emotional and instrumental support, and by staying actively involved with residents. Families are a vital, untapped resource for social workers in promoting independent living.

MeSH terms

  • Canada
  • Family*
  • Group Homes*
  • Humans
  • Mentally Ill Persons / psychology*
  • Social Support*