Physical & mental health

Girl swinging on monkey bars
Many of CFYS' projects address the physical and mental well-being of youth.

Trajectories of Marijuana use Across a Decade

CFYS Research Fellow, Dr. Bonnie Leadbeater, has released a summary report on her Cannabis Catalyst Grant titled "Trajectories of Marijuana use Across a Decade: Their predictors in adolescence and impact on the health, academic, social and economic outcomes of Canadian Young Adults".

The recent nationwide legalization of cannabis in Canada poses new questions about its effects on Canadian youth. Funded through the Canadian Institute of Health Research (CIHR), Dr. Leadbeater's research on cannabis use in the transition to young adulthood is based on data collected over a decade (2003 to 2013) from a randomly recruited sample of 662 youth from British Columbia. The research focuses on how different patterns of cannabis use affect mental health, substance use, education and achievement from adolescence to adulthood.

Click here to view the full report.

Funding Partner: Canadian Institute of Health Research (CIHR)

Research team: Dr. Bonnie Leadbeater and team

Youth Traffic Safety

Impaired driving remains one of the leading causes of death among youth. In addition to the recent legalization of marijuana in Canada, road safety becomes a growing concern to not only drivers and bikers, but also passengers.  Partnering with the CRD, the center is conducting youth-based research: On the Road, investigating the attitude of numerous safe driving behaviours among youth 15-30 who live in the CRD.  In doing this research, we are hoping to gain some understanding of youth driving behaviours and most importantly, to better build Victoria into a safer city.

In partnership with CRD Traffic Safety and CHEK Media Group.

Innovative approaches to youth traffic safety: evidence and education

Youth are overrepresented in traffic (pedestrian, cycling, driving) incidents caused by judgment errors or distraction (NHTSA, 2013). The purpose of this research project is to investigate when and why youth and young adults (16-30 years) adopt (or not) safe traffic behaviours, and to explore with them (as well as adult practice and policy stakeholders) the foundation for effective educational materials to increase safe traffic behaviours as both driver/rider and passengers. Additionally, the project will reach out to local youth 12 to 15 years with adapted educational materials empowering them as passengers with the potential to influence adult traffic behaviours. This research will be informed by behavioural and educational theories and research, as well as evidence from other jurisdictions, that involve dimensions that inform, explain, practice and monitor behaviour for long-term and sustainable safe traffic behaviours. Legacies of the project include new approaches for engaging youth/young adults in evidence-based reflection on traffic safety, multimedia educational materials and strengthened partnerships across youth traffic safety stakeholders.

Funding Partner: CRD Traffic Safety Commission

Research team: Dr. Frederick Grouzet, Tricia Roche and team.

Pathways healing childhood trauma project

A team from CFYS will be conducting an implementation evaluation of the Pathways to Healing Partnership. Pathways is a specialized team within the Comox Valley Child Development Association that assists families who have experienced a range of challenges including: poverty, homelessness, physical and mental health issues. The program employs neurodevelopmental and trauma-informed approaches. The evaluation will serve implementation and quality control objectives.

Funding Partner: Children’s Health Foundation

Research Team: Anne Marshall, Joelle Taknint, Tricia Roche, Allison Murphy.

Child-parent relationship therapy

CFYS is evaluating a pilot project, offered jointly by Island Health’s Child Youth and Family Mental Health Services (CYFMH) and Child, Family Rehabilitation Services, Early Intervention Program (MCFD and VIHA), that explores the effectiveness of group therapy for parents and young children. The pilot focused on identifying and applying mental health practices specific to early intervention work. The pilot was funded by the Children’s Health Foundation.

Funding partner: Island Health

Research team: Anne Marshall, Fanie Collardeau, Tricia Roche, Emerald Pringle, and Jessica Cumming. 

Aboriginal child and youth mental health

Aboriginal child and youth mental health - Practitioners' experiences of effective cultural support and treatment identifies effective and ineffective practices, policies, resources, and services related to the integration of cultural identity awareness in youth mental health interventions.

Funding partner: Ministry of Child and Family Development

Research team: E. Anne Marshall, Jennifer Coverdale, Tricia Roche, Leah Lychowyd, Paulina Ramirez, Lindsay Delaronde, and Jessica Cumming.

Healthy Youth Survey

The Healthy Youth Survey (HYS) conducted repeat interviews over 10 years with over 600 young people from Greater Victoria. Learn more about the findings from the infographic, and health infographic. You can read the full report here.

Funding partner: CIHR

Research team: Dr. Bonnie Leadbeater and team