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Understanding the risk and protective factors of Child Resilience: “Bending and not breaking”

  • Alberta Children’s Hospital Kinsmen Learning Centre (4th floor) 2888 Shaganappi Trail Northwest Calgary, AB, T3B 6A8 Canada (map)

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Resilience is the ability to recover, adapt and rebound from adversity. Children exposed to adversities e.g. a natural disaster, adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) are at risk of developing physical and mental health problems. However, in children exposed to risk, some experience adverse outcomes while other do not. The most pressing unanswered question in child outcome research is child resiliency - why some children exposed to risk do not experience adverse outcomes. This presentation will discuss our current understanding of child resiliency using longitudinal data from an Alberta cohort of mothers and children. The presentation will highlight the interplay between risk factors (adverse maternal mental health, inter-parental conflict) and protective factors (social support, parenting) in shaping child resiliency.