Child, Youth, and Family Studies, Department of



Julie A. Tippens

Document Type


Date of this Version



Published in Qualitative Health Research (2021), DOI: 10.1177/10497323211003059, 18 pp


Copyright © 2021 Julie A. Tippens, Kaitlin Roselius, Irene Padasas, Gulie Khalaf, Kara Kohel, Elizabeth Mollard, and Izdihar (Vianne) Sheikh. Published by SAGE Publications. Used by permission


This study explored how ethnic Yazidi refugee women overcome adversity to promote psychosocial health and well-being within the context of U.S. resettlement. Nine Yazidi women participated in two small photovoice groups, each group lasting eight sessions (16 sessions total). Women discussed premigration and resettlement challenges, cultural strengths and resources, and strategies to overcome adversity. Yazidi women identified trauma and perceived loss of culture as primary stressors. Participants’ resilience processes included using naan (as sustenance and symbol) to survive and thrive as well as by preserving an ethnoreligious identity. Findings suggest that women’s health priorities and resilience-promoting strategies center on fostering a collective cultural, religious, and ethnic identity postmigration. Importantly, women used naan (bread) as a metaphor to index cultural values, experiences of distress, and coping strategies. We discuss implications for this in promoting refugees’ mental and psychosocial health in U.S. resettlement.