This intervention study investigated how much impact a specific peer-coaching (Peer2Peer) for refugee adolescents has on different factors of well-being for both sides: refugee adolescents (peers, N = 16) and their local peer coaches (buddies, N = 16). Next to pre- and post-tests, four buddies reflected on the process via weekly media diaries. We found that higher peer-loneliness and lower self-esteem was reported for peers in the beginning but these differences disappeared. These results were confirmed by buddies’ media diaries: language and communication barriers reduced and friendships between buddies and peers grew. Buddies also reported high feelings of responsibilities in their media diaries which led to worries about their peer, but also to pride due to peers’ improvement. Online communication was used on an almost daily basis to stay in contact each other. Snapchat was found to influence emotional and affectionate support. In sum, Peer2Peer as a program showed positive effects for both sides. Future Peer2Peer programs should include trainings on social media as well, as most apps are able to be used independent of own language skills. Thus, social media can help to overcome language barriers and intensifies the feeling of being supported.

, , , , ,,
Media and Communication
Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication (ESHCC)

Kneer, J., van Eldik, A., Jansz, J., Eischeid, S., & Usta, M. (2019). With a Little Help from My Friends: Peer Coaching for Refugee Adolescents and the Role of Social Media. Media and Communication, 7(2), 264–274. doi:10.17645/mac.v7i2.1876