Reciprocity in the Clubhouse Context
1Kimiko Tanaka & Larry Davidson
Albeit still limited, the literature has begun to document reciprocity, including service user-provider reciprocity, as key to psychiatric recovery. This article presents a thick description of reciprocity occurring in the mental health clubhouse context, drawing on qualitative interview data from 103 users and 25 staff at five clubhouses in the U.S. and Finland, which was analyzed using a grounded theory approach. We found that receiving and giving support appears to be a part of everyday life at the clubhouse. We also found that this seemed conducive to recovery in that it helped users, through what we identified as clubhouse ways, to experience personhood, thereby transforming their battered sense of existence into a sense of agency and, perhaps more importantly, a sense of self-worth and being part of society. The clubhouse model may represent a viable collective approach to complement current community-based mental health systems of care that emphasize individual support.
mental health recovery, reciprocity, clubhouse way, personhood, transformation, community, everyday life