Si se puede! Cultural Factors as Predictors of Resilience among Mexican Farmworkers
Blanco, Karla Trinidad
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Most scientific literature on farmworkers has examined the impact of occupational hazards such as physical illness from exposure to pesticides and substance use due to separation from their families (Ward, 2010). However, the resilience of farmworkers, which enables them to overcome and manage the negative impacts of their occupation, has been consistently ignored. In research examining resilience, Mexican cultural values such as familismo/familism and enculturation seem to provide an extended social network of support that increases people’s ability to cope with hardships in life (Parra-Cardona, Bulock, Imig, Villarruel, & Gold, 2006). The effects of familismo/familism have not been explored within Mexican farmworkers. Thus, in attempting to shift the paradigm from a deficit perspective to a strength-based lens, this study focused on examining the effects of cultural factors of familismo/familism, enculturation, spirituality, and acculturation on the resilience among Mexican farmworkers. Participants included (N= 151) individuals who identified as Mexican or Mexican-American farmworkers, and were asked to complete a survey which was verbally administered or self-completed in Spanish. The seven-part survey included: 1) A demographic questionnaire, 2) the Acculturation Rating Scale for Mexican Americans-II (ARSMA-II), 3) the Latino Values Scale (LVS), 4) the Daily Spiritual Experience Scale (DSES-S in Spanish), 5) the Resilience Scale for Adults (RSA), 6) the Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale-10 (CD-RISC-10CA), and 7) the Quality of Life Assessment (WHOQOL-BREF). In this investigation, results indicated the cultural values of familismo/familism and spirituality were significantly related to resilience. Furthermore, acculturation was negatively related to resilience. In other words, the higher the level of acculturation, the lower level of resilience. In terms of well-being, this study showed a relationship between gender and well-being, that is males in this study showed lower levels of well-being when compared to their female counterparts. Furthermore, spirituality was also significantly related to well-being. More specifically, when Mexican farmworkers in this study endorsed higher levels of spirituality, they also endorsed higher levels of well-being. Surprisingly, gender, immigration status, and enculturation were not significantly related to resilience. Similarly, immigration status and levels of familismo/familism, enculturation, and acculturation did not show a significant relationship with well-being.