Peer Support and Mental Health of Migrant Domestic Workers: A Scoping Review

Ken Hok Man Ho, Chen Yang, Alex Kwun Yat Leung, Daniel Bressington, Wai Tong Chien, Qijin Cheng, Daphne Sze Ki Cheung

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

The effectiveness of peer support in improving mental health and well-being has been well documented for vulnerable populations. However, how peer support is delivered to migrant domestic workers (MDWs) to support their mental health is still unknown. This scoping review aimed to synthesize evidence on existing peer support services for improving mental health among MDWs. We systematically searched eight electronic databases, as well as grey literature. Two reviewers independently performed title/abstract and full-text screening, and data extraction. Twelve articles were finally included. Two types of peer support were identified from the included studies, i.e., mutual aid and para-professional trained peer support. MDWs mainly seek support from peers through mutual aid for emotional comfort. The study’s findings suggest that the para-professional peer support training program was highly feasible and culturally appropriate for MDWs. However, several barriers were identified to affect the successful implementation of peer support, such as concerns about emotion contagion among peers, worries about disclosure of personal information, and lack of support from health professionals. Culture-specific peer support programs should be developed in the future to overcome these barriers to promote more effective mental health practices.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7617
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume19
Issue number13
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2022

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