Pullen Sansfaçon, A., Pineault, D., Davis, J., Dyer, J., Julie, J., Ens Manning, K., Temple-Newhook, J. et Pickett, S. (2021). Applying self-directed groupwork and social action research methodology with francophone parents of trans children and youth in rural Quebec. Groupwork, 30(1), 114-131.
Parental support is an important protective factor in preventing suicide among trans youth. However, parents often struggle to accept their child’s gender transition. Having access to a group and to meeting other parents facilitates the acceptance process, but support groups are rare and even more so outside urban areas. The research project discussed in this article was developed to understand specifically the experience of parents of francophone trans youth living in rural and remote communities in Quebec. A Self-Directed Group approach (Mullender, Ward and Fleming 2013), combined with Social Action Research (Author et al. 2015) was initiated to offer a platform for parents to explore the specificities of parenting a trans child in rural francophone Quebec. Parents were recruited through social and traditional media and a series of group meetings was planned to collect data and as well as to facilitate the parents’ mobilization. Despite applying the Self-Directed Groupwork principles and process, many challenges were encountered, stimulating a number of reflections on the use of self-directed group work and social action in remote geographical areas. This paper explores some of those challenges and discusses a possible way forward for research.