Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)


Graduate Department of Clinical Psychology

First Advisor

Winston Seegobin, PsyD

Second Advisor

Brooke Kuhnhausen, PhD

Third Advisor

Elizabeth Hamilton, PsyD


Resilience is a vital factor in overcoming adversity. The presence of hope and spiritual meaning have been demonstrated to contribute to resilience. Globally, there are millions of children and adolescents who have faced traumatic experiences including, but not limited to, the loss of their parents. The current study explored Kenyan children and adolescents’ experiences of resilience, hope and spirituality in the environment of a group home and school in Kenya. Mixed measures were utilized. Seventy-five participants ages 10-19 years old completed the quantitative measures including the CD-RISC, SEARS-C/A, the Children’s Hope scale, the Adult Hope scale, and a 1-item Spirituality measure. Out of those participants, 14 completed semi-structured interviews. Seven themes were extracted from the qualitative data including the following: adversity, meaning making of the past, community, role models, trust in something bigger than themselves, future plans, and religious coping. A series of correlations were conducted, and results found significant correlations between the children’s social resilience scale and the individual resilience scale (r(35) = .537, p = .001), the total Children’s hope scale and the SEARS-C total score (r(35) = .465, p = .005) and the CD-RISC and the Agency subscale of the Adult Hope scale (r(40) = .433, p = .005. This study contributes to the currently limited research in Kenya by examining the role resilience, hope and spirituality play in the experience of coping with loss for Kenyan children, specifically children and adolescents in a group home environment.