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Culturally Competent Solution-Focused Conversations With Caribbean American Youth: A Case Example

Giselle L. Bayard, Anne Rambo, Jamie-Lyn Richartz


The aim of this article is to expand on the ideas presented in Kim (2014) to include the Caribbean American population in the description of how cultural awareness can be important in therapy, and how—especially in solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT)—a general understanding of, or personal access to, the client’s cultural context may be helpful. Cultural awareness may help to initiate joining and conversation, and often can help the therapist more easily follow the client’s hints about their personal possibilities and solutions. We will describe some of the specific issues and differences from mainstream American culture that Caribbean American youth can face. We will also describe some of the strengths and protective factors that stem from this same background. To illustrate our ideas of how to hold a culturally competent SFBT conversation, we present the case example of Nadine, who sees her therapist Jamie-Lyn to get help to get back on the right track in school. When Jamie-Lyn sees her supervisor, Giselle, she gets some new ideas based on the common cultural background of her client and supervisor. Since this common background will not always be present, therapists should take notice of how Jamie-Lyn with the help of Giselle became more open and curious about her client’s different life experience.


solution-focused brief therapy; cultural competence; cultural awareness; supervision


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DOI: 10.14335/ijsfp.v3i1.24

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