Maternal Humanitarian Entrants' "Me Time": How Social Support Works in a Facilitated Playgroup

Document Type

Journal Article


Faculty of Health, Engineering and Science


School of Psychology and Social Science




This article was originally published as: La Rosa, A. C., & Guilfoyle, A. (2013). Maternal Humanitarian Entrants’ “Me Time”: How Social Support Works in a Facilitated Playgroup. The International Journal of Health, Wellness, and Society, 3(1), 43-56.


Conducted in collaboration with Save the Children Australia, this study employed an Interpretative Phenomenological methodology to explore how maternal humanitarian entrants (MHE) ascribed meanings to the role of social support in a facilitated playgroup. A focus group with nine women, individual interviews with five women and follow-up interviews with four playgroup staff members and two stakeholders were conducted utilizing a semi-structured approach. The interviews provided an opportunity for the women to share their rich descriptions and these were subject to an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. Four salient themes emerged from the data: Isolation, a sense of wellbeing, “Me Time” and ‘a new family’. This research provides valuable insight into the role of social support for MHE in similar circumstances and assists in advocating for playgroups as an overarching source of support.

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