LA #4-Purpose, Problem & Questions

Mental health issues in immigrants are becoming a major concern in Canada (Thomson, Chaze, George & Guruge, 2015). The rate of immigrants in the Canadian population continues to increase and has become problematic in public health due to their continues deterioration of mental health (Islam & Oremus, 2014; Subedi & Rosenberg, 2014). Canada has become a home to many immigrants across the globe and among those immigrants are Ghanaians. An outlined by Statistics Canada (2016), shows a growth rate of 10% of Ghanaian immigrants in Canada population. According to Citizenship and Immigration Canada, poor mental health among immigrants is estimated at 5.95% and 7.04%, which is lower than the Canadian-born population (Robert & Gilkinson, 2012). Currently, it is estimated that 1 million Canadians live with mental illness and up to 1 in 5 Canadians will encounter mental health issues in their lifetime (Halter, Pollard & Jakubec, 2014). Therefore, it is important to pay special attention to these aggregate unique needs because they are faced with numerous physical, psychological, and social role changes that challenge their mental health status (Han, Han, Luo, Jacobs & Jean-Baptiste, 2013).

Researchers have identified that, after migrating to Canada, many immigrant’s health continues to decline due to the hardships and stressors they endure in Canada (Islam & Oremus, 2014; Thomas et al., 2015). Stressors such as underemployment, adapting to a new culture, racialization, discrimination and family separation/social isolation have been a contributing factor that affects the immigrant’s mental health status (Han et al., 2013; Thomson et al., 2015; Guruge et al., 2015). These challenges that immigrant faces daily affects their optimal mental health and result in anxiety, isolation, and alienation within their community (Han et al., 2013; Guruge et al., 2015). Many immigrants have an insufficient amount of information regarding mental health services due to a lack of mental health care services in their countries, fear of stigma for accessing services, or a lack of culturally appropriate services in Canada (Han et al., 2013; Thomas et al., 2015). As this confirms that many Ghanaians in Canada lacks the knowledge on the importance of mental health well-being due to the fact they were raised in an environment whereby they have not been introduced to poor mental health function as an issue. The consequences of immigrants’ challenges in accessing health care and being unaware of mental health resources available to them result in underutilization of mental health services and viewed as a health inequity within the immigrant population which needs to be addressed (Thomson et al., 2015). There are various studies of mental health on immigrants that focuses on the struggles of moving into a new a country and dealing with stressors that leads to ineffective mental health function in many (Guruge, Thomson, George, and Chaze, 2015; Han, Han, Luo, Jacobs, & Jean-Baptiste, 2013; Robert, & Gilkinson, 2012; Thomson, Chaze, George & Guruge, 2015). However, does not narrow down to specific ethnical backgrounds (Thomas et al., 2015; Han et al., 2013; Robert & Gilkinson, 2012). Based on the dearth of literature on mental health of Ghanaian-Canadian community, this study seeks to examine the perception and beliefs of mental health in Ghanaian-Canadian immigrants. The purpose of this ethnography qualitative study is to examine the perception and beliefs of mental health in the Ghanaian-Canadian immigrants and how mental health influenced their culture. The goal is to provide a knowledge base of this community’s values and belief’s concerning mental health base to assist nurses in providing culturally sensitive competent care and being culturally aware. The following questions will be used as a guide in the interview process: (1) What are your beliefs and perception of mental health? (2) How does your culture or religion impact your views on mental health? And (3) How do you cope with stressors in your life and how do you manage stressors? This will allow the researcher to gain more understanding from this cultures lived experience of mental health (LoBiondo et al., 2013).

Rough Draft:

Methodology: Qualitative method by using an ethnographic approach it allows the researcher to gain a holistic view in understanding the meaning and experiences of the Ghanaian community culture (LoBiondo-wood et al., 2013).

Goal: The goal is to provide a knowledge base of this community’s values and belief’s concerning mental health base to assist nurses in providing culturally sensitive competent care and being culturally aware.

Population: Ghanaian-Canadians immigrants living in Canada.

Sample: In-depth interactions, interviews, purposeful and small sampling in Ghanaian-community churches in Toronto.

Data collection methods: Face-to-face interviews, tape-recorded, videotaping and note taking to gather participants responses in a small group session (LoBiondo-Wood et al., 2013). A written consent will be obtained from all participants.

Analysis strategy:  Quasi-statistical analysis which includes: using thematic analysis; interpretative approaches and conversation analysis to gather and sort data on participant’s responses to the research questions (Noble & Smith, 2014).

Presentation: Essay


Guruge, S., Thomson, M., Geroge, U., Chaze, F. (2015). Social support, social conflict, and immigrant women’s mental health in a Canadian context: a scoping review. Journal of psychiatric and mental health nursing. 22(1), 655-667.

Halter, M. J., Pollard, C.L., Jakubec, S.L. (2014). Varcarolis’s Canadian psychiatric mental health nursing: A clinical approach (2nded.). Milton, ON: Elsevier Canada.

Han, X., Han, X., Luo, Q., Jacobs, S., & Jean-Baptiste, M. (2013). Report of a mental health survey among Chinese international students at Yale University. Journal of American College Health, 61(1), 1-8.

Islam, F. & Oremus, M. (2014). Mixed Methods Immigrant Mental Health Research in Canada: A Systematic Review. Journal of Immigrant Minority Health. 16(1), 1284-1289.

Robert, AM. & Gilkinson, T. (2012). Mental health and well-being of recent immigrants in Canada: Evidence from the Longitudinal survey of Immigrants to Canada. Citizenship and Immigration Canada, 1-27

Statistics Canada. (2017, Nov). Immigration and Ethnocultural Diversity Highlight Tables. Retrieved from

Subedi, R. P., & Rosenberg, M. W. (2014). Determinants of the variations in self-reported health status among recent and more established immigrants in canada. Social Science & Medicine, 115(Complete), 103-110. doi:10.1016/j.socscimed.2014.06.021

LoBiondo-Wood, G. & Haber, J. (2013). Nursing research in Canada: Methods, critical appraisal, and utilization (3rd ed.). Toronto, ON: Mosby Elsevier.

Noble, H., & Smith, J. (2014). Qualitative data analysis: A practical example. Evidence – Based Nursing, 17(1), 2. doi:





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