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A developmental formative evaluation of a pilot participatory music program for veterans with housing insecurity.
Wasmuth S, Rattray NA, Wasmuth S, Cheng P, Rattray NA, Crow S, Cheng P, Myers J, Crow S, Burns DS, Myers J, Myers LJ, Burns DS, Hook B, Myers LJ, Lustig A, Hook B, Perkins AJ, Lustig A, Cheatham AJ, Perkins AJ, Cheatham AJ, Bravata DM, Bravata DM. A developmental formative evaluation of a pilot participatory music program for veterans with housing insecurity. BMC public health. 2023 Aug 19; 23(1):1583.
Interventions are needed to improve well-being and promote community reintegration among Veterans with housing insecurity. The objective was to conduct a developmental formative evaluation of a participatory music program.
This single-site, pilot study implemented a participatory music program at a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Homeless Domiciliary that included one-hour sessions (group music instruction and ensemble playing), 3 times per week for 3 months. Intervention development was guided by the Model of Human Occupation (MOHO). Evaluation was guided by the MOHO and the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Evaluation (CFIR). Qualitative data were collected via semi-structured interviews from participants and non-participants, and were analyzed using an interdisciplinary, constant comparison qualitative analysis technique.
Sixteen program participants and 8 non-participants were enrolled, age range 26-59 (mean 41; standard deviation, 11) years; 75% were White. The sample for this study (N = 12) included five participants and seven non-participants. Semi-structured interview responses produced three salient themes illuminating Veterans' perspectives: (1) key characteristics of the intervention (the relative advantage of the participatory program over other problem-focused programs; the importance of a supportive, encouraging teaching; the group setting; the role of music); (2) the therapeutic power of the program (based on it being enjoyable; and serving as an escape from preoccupations); and (3) the context and culture (which included Veterans supporting each other and the Domiciliary setting).
Veterans described the benefits of a participatory music intervention compared to problem-based groups, which included enjoyment, skill acquisition facilitating pride, escape, reconnecting with their identity prior to current problems, and experiencing positive aspects of Veteran culture such as mutual support and discipline. These data support ongoing research about participatory music programs to support Veterans with housing insecurity.