Past Projects

Compassion Cultivation Training among Gender and Sexual Minorities

Investigators: Jessie Simonetti, M.S., Kimberly F. Balsam, Ph.D., & Matthew Skinta, Ph.D., ABPP

Description: This study is a randomized, controlled trial of an empirically-based psychoeducation program called Compassion Cultivation Training (CCT).  This program was recently developed by Stanford University’s Center for Compassion and Altruism Research & Education to help train individuals on how to cultivate compassion and improve resilience. Currently, there are no published studies on the impact of any formal compassion training program, including CCT, with gender and sexual minorities (GSM). To address this gap, this study proposes to examine the influence of CCT on reducing emotional distress (i.e. depression, anxiety, stigma, shame) and improving well-being (i.e. mindfulness, compassion) among GSM adults. The groups were conducted in 2018 and data are currently being analyzed. The purpose of this study is to utilize CCT to shift awareness and everyday practices of compassion to not only be utilized in moments of deep suffering, but also as an active anchor or stance in daily life. Through CCT, the investigators hope to explore ways to strengthen resilience in this vulnerable population.