Introduction: Evidence-based interventions for training parents are proven to prevent onset and escalation of childhood mental health problems. However, participation in such programs is low, especially among hard-to-reach, underserved populations such as Filipino Americans. Filipinos, the largest Asian subgroup in California, have significant behavioral health disparities compared with non-Hispanic whites and other Asian subgroups. The purpose of this study was to learn about Filipinos' barriers and facilitators to participating in "Incredible Years" (IY), a parenting program.
Methods: We conducted 4 focus groups in Los Angeles, California, in 2012; the groups consisted of 20 Filipino parents of children aged 6 to 12 years who recently completed the IY parenting program, which was offered as a prevention workshop. Three reviewers, including two co-authors (A.S., J.J.) and a research assistant used content analysis to independently code the interview transcripts and extract subthemes. Grounded theory analytic methods were used to analyze interview transcripts.
Results: Parents' perceived benefits of participation in IY were learning more effective parenting techniques, networking with other parents, improved spousal relationships, and improvements in their children's behavior. Parents' most common motivating factor for enrollment in IY was to improve their parenting skills and their relationships with their children. The most common barriers to participation were being uncomfortable sharing problems with others and the fear of being stigmatized by others judging their parenting skills. Participants said that parent testimonials would be the most effective way to promote IY. Many recommended outreach at schools, pediatricians' offices, and churches.
Conclusion: Increasing Filipino American parent enrollment in IY in culturally relevant ways will reduce the incidence of mental health disorders among children in this growing population.