During a global pandemic, it is critical to rapidly deploy a psychological intervention to support the mental health and resilience of highly affected individuals and communities.
This is the rationale behind the development and implementation of the Pandemic Acceptance and Commitment to Empowerment Response (PACER) Training, an online, blended, skills building intervention to increase the resilience and well-being of participants while promoting their individual and collective empowerment and capacity building.
Based on acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) and social justice–based group empowerment psychoeducation (GEP), we developed the Acceptance and Commitment to Empowerment (ACE) model to enhance psychological resilience and collective empowerment. The PACER program consists of 6 online, interactive, self-guided modules complemented by 6 weekly, 90-minute, videoconference, facilitator-led, group sessions.
As of August 2021, a total of 325 participants had enrolled in the PACER program. Participants include frontline health care providers and Chinese-Canadian community members.
The PACER program is an innovative intervention program with the potential for increasing resilience and empowerment while reducing mental distress during the pandemic.