Research/Project Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Occupational Therapy


Occupational Science/Occupational Therapy


Kristine Haertl


The purpose of this Masters project was to emphasize community psychosocial practice through collaboration with a local mental health organization by conducting a needs assessment, implementing a project at the community site, and evaluating the outcomes. Prior to collaboration with the organization, a literature review was conducted analyzing the role of occupational therapy working with individuals with serious mental illness. From this, it was found that occupational therapists can work with individuals with serious mental illness to engage in meaningful occupations, increase a sense of accomplishment, competence, and satisfaction, and participate in community living. Additionally, it is within occupational therapy's scope of practice to provide resources and equip individuals with serious mental illness with the tools necessary to engage in social participation, community engagement, and leisure. From the information gathered in the literature review and needs assessment, it was determined to create and implement an activity resource binder and activity leader board to increase community engagement and leisure participation and provide leadership opportunities for the residents living at the community site. Overall, the resource binder and leader board received positive feedback from the stakeholders. It is anticipated that the community site will continue to use the activity resource binder and activity leader board for the long-term as we believe it will increase their leisure participation in diverse activities in their community and with one another.