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Resilience, Ethnicity, and AdolesCent Mental Health 


Principal Investigator:Professor Craig Morgan

Study Funded by: European Research Council; Reference 648837

What is the aim of REACH?

Most mental health problems first emerge during adolescence.  Their frequency, type, and persistence over time vary by ethnic group.  Understanding what factors increase and decrease risk for such problems during these critical phases, in a range of ethnic groups, is important for developing strategies for prevention and intervention.  REACH aims to investigate the impact of social, psychological, and biological risk and protective factors on the occurrence and persistence of mental health problems over time in large, ethnically diverse cohorts of adolescents.

How will REACH achieve this?

REACH has two parts.

First, REACH will recruit and follow, at one and two years, three cohorts of around 900 adolescents aged 11-12, 12-13, and 13-14.  Participants will be recruited from 10 to 12 secondary schools in the London boroughs of Lambeth, Southwark and Croydon.  All those who take part will complete, in class, a questionnaire at recruitment (baseline; T1) and at one (T2) and two years (T3) (see Figure).  The questionnaire will include items on mental health and social and psychological risk and protective factors. 

Figure. REACH Study design.


School Year 7

School Year 8

School Year 9

School Year 10

School Year 11


age 11-2

age 12-13

age 13-14

age 14-15

age 15-16



Cohort 1 (n, 900)

Cohort 2 (n, 900)

Cohort 3 (n, 900)






Cohort 1

Cohort 2

Cohort 3






Cohort 1

Cohort 2

Cohort 3

Second, we will recruit a sub-sample of around 180 from each cohort (total, around 540) to complete, at T1 and T2, more detailed interviews and assessments and provide biological samples (e.g., a hair sample to measure cortisol, a stress hormone).

What is the time frame for REACH?

REACH began in September 2015 and will last for 5 years. So far in the first year, REACH has completed a pilot in 2 schools in Lambeth and will aim to finalise the plans for the programme, following further consultations with young people, parents, teachers, and local communities, and secure involvement of schools.  In the second, third, and fourth year, we will recruit participants and complete data collection. In the fifth year, we will analyse the data and disseminate findings widely, including to stakeholders.

To find out more about the study and potential ways to get involved, please contact Professor Craig Morgan on 020 7848 0351 

You can also visit the REACH Website at: 


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