There has been a growing interest over the past two decades in understanding why some young people are able to overcome adversity, thrive in challenging circumstances, and succeed despite disadvantage. This ability is known as resilience.
Resilient youth see the world in an optimistic way and have the ability to bounce back from challenges. They cope with and adapt to the stresses they face. They learn from challenging experiences and become stronger and better prepared to manage problems in the future.
The Resilience Research Centre at Dalhousie University is expanding our understanding of resilience. They are looking at the resilient young person’s ability to navigate their environment and find the resources needed to sustain their well-being. They also look at how the young person, along with their family and other community members, advocates and negotiates for resources. This definition of resilience makes it clear that services, supports, and resources need to be provided in ways that are meaningful and accessible to young people, their families, and their communities.