Intervention Journal

July 2012 - Volume 10 - Issue 2

ARTICLES

Mental health among opiate users in Kabul: a pilot study from the Médecins du Monde Harm Reduction Programme
Authors:
Vogel, Marc; Tschakarjan, Senop; Maguet, Olivier; Vandecasteele, Olivier; Kinkel, Till; Dürsteler-MacFarland, Kenneth

FIELD REPORTS

The development of a comprehensive mapping service for mental health and psychosocial support in Jordan
Authors:
Baca, Mary Jo; Fayyad, Khawla; Marini, Anita; Weissbecker, Inka
Mapping of mental health and psychosocial support in post conflict Libya
Authors:
Fitzgerald, Colleen; Elkaied, Amera; Weissbecker, Inka

REFLECTIONS, COMMENTS, LETTERS

Who is Where, When, doing What: mapping services for mental health and psychosocial support in emergencies
Authors:
O’ Connell, Ruth; Poudyal, Bhava; Streel, Emmanuel; Bahgat, Fahmy; Tol, Wietse; Ventevogel, Peter

REVIEWS

SUMMARIES

Summaries in Arabic
Authors:
Editors
Résumés en Français
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Editors
Summaries in Pashto
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Editors
Summaries in Russian
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Editors
Summaries in Sinhala
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Resumenes en Español
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Summaries in Tamil
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Editors

From the editor: empowerment and its multiple faces

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Authors:
Ventevogel, Peter

ARTICLES

Engaging war affected youth through photography: Photovoice with former child soldiers in Sierra Leone

Photovoice is a community based participatory research method that combines photography, community awareness building, group discussions, and social action. Photovoice seeks to enable both individuals and groups, particularly those facing marginalisation and disempowerment, to record and reflect on community strengths and challenges, through photography. This paper presents a Photovoice project, conducted with a group of former child soldiers living in urban Sierra Leone, exploring their post war lives and reintegration experiences. In addition to addressing how the project was conceptualised, developed and implemented, the authors also present the youth's photographs, highlighting the key issues and reintegration realities emerging from their images. The paper then discusses the strengths and challenges of the Photovoice method experience, and concludes with a set of recommendations for future initiatives.

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Authors:
Denov, Myriam; Doucet, Denise; Kamara, A.

Community Systems Strengthening in Afghanistan: a way to reduce domestic violence and to reinforce women's agency

In Afghanistan, a burden of poor mental health exists within the contexts of ongoing poverty, social inequality, and persistent violence. Although women in Afghanistan share the same problems as most women in developing countries, many elements of the inequalities that Afghan women experience are extreme, and the context in which these women live is exceptional. Addressing these contextual factors, in order to discover culturally acceptable and feasible solutions to these problems, poses major challenges and asks for a multi-sectoral approach. In 2002, HealthNet TPO began to implement mental health activities in the Nangarhar province. An important objective of the programme's activities has been the development of community based, psychosocial interventions to enhance the population's capacity to deal with the consequences of mental distress. During the programme implementation in Afghanistan, it became evident that, in order to reduce mental distress, the social determinants of (mental) health required more attention. This paper describes how a specific programme to reduce domestic violence, and to reinforce women's agency within the context of the present day challenges, is being implemented according to a community systems strengthening framework that has been adapted for this purpose and context.

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Authors:
van Mierlo, Bibiane

Mental health among opiate users in Kabul: a pilot study from the Médecins du Monde Harm Reduction Programme

The number of injecting opiate users in Afghanistan has recently risen dramatically. Through this cross-sectional pilot study, the authors have aimed to assess psychiatric comorbidity and drug use patterns among Afghan opiate users, which might have implications for harm reduction and treatment interventions. The authors conducted semi-structured psychiatric interviews, with a convenience sample of 30 clients of the Médecins du Monde drop-in centre in Kabul. Symptoms were classified according to the WHO International Classification of Diseases, Revision 10. Results show that psychiatric comorbidity is very common, particularly depressive and posttraumatic stress disorders. Ideally, this could be addressed by harm reduction and treatment measures.

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Authors:
Vogel, Marc; Tschakarjan, Senop; Maguet, Olivier; Vandecasteele, Olivier; Kinkel, Till; Dürsteler-MacFarland, Kenneth

Using focus group methodology to adapt measurement scales and explore questions of wellbeing and mental health: the case of Sri Lanka

Context affects research validity. Therefore, in order to reduce any uncertainty about their findings, cross-cultural researchers should use appropriate methodological techniques. Using focus groups to evaluate the quality of standard measures is one such technique. This paper highlights a study composed of six focus groups that was conducted at the Medical Faculty of the University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka, with the purpose of assessing equivalence of measures of wellbeing and mental health. Each focus group consisted of three males and three females (age range 35–62). A number of limitations in the measures were highlighted over the course of the sessions, and one questionnaire (measuring positive and negative affects) was subsequently dropped due to lack of cross-cultural equivalence.

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Authors:
Jayawickreme, Eranda; Jayawickreme, Nuwan; Goonasekera, Michelle A.

FIELD REPORTS

The development of a comprehensive mapping service for mental health and psychosocial support in Jordan

Jordan received a significant influx of Iraqi refugees as a result of war, ongoing conflict, political instability, and limited economic opportunities in Iraq. The multiple needs of Iraqi refugees are primarily met through international donors and non-profit organisations that implement comprehensive programmes, including the provision of mental health care and psychosocial support. With significant human and monetary resources being allocated towards these short term needs, strong coordination is essential among participating organisations in order to optimise outcomes. The international nongovernmental organisation, International Medical Corps, co leads efforts with the World Health Organization in Jordan to conduct a 4Ws mapping (Who is Where, When, doing What) of current mental health and psychosocial support activities. This mapping was initially carried out in 2009, followed by updated mapping exercises in 2010/2011 and 2012, and will continue in 2013. The authors describe how the mapping was developed and has evolved over time, and report the main results and challenges faced. They conclude that the mapping has not only been useful for information sharing and coordination, but that this exercise has also evolved into additional initiatives, such as developing common referral pathways among organisations, and including aspects of protection in the mapping.

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Authors:
Baca, Mary Jo; Fayyad, Khawla; Marini, Anita; Weissbecker, Inka

Mapping of mental health and psychosocial support in post conflict Libya

The violent conflict that erupted in Libya and toppled the Gaddafi regime in 2011 has significantly impacted social services and the health infrastructure in the country. The influx of international humanitarian organisations has led to many initiatives to strengthen mental health care and psychosocial support services for the Libyan population. However, with a new and fragile government and many different international actors, in addition to emerging national initiatives, it was difficult to determine who was doing what. As a result, the situation was somewhat unclear. On the request of the new Libyan health authorities, the international NGO International Medical Corps conducted a 4Ws mapping (Who is Where, When, doing What) of the current mental health and psychosocial support activities in Libya that focused on vulnerable areas impacted most by the conflict. The authors, who were involved in the 4Ws mapping, describe the main results and discuss the challenges they faced. They conclude that this was a useful exercise for organising and sharing information that was previously unavailable. The tool helped link different organisations, that previously did not know which services were being offered elsewhere, and thereby contributed to a better understanding and cooperation among actors.

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Authors:
Fitzgerald, Colleen; Elkaied, Amera; Weissbecker, Inka

REFLECTIONS, COMMENTS, LETTERS

When you need to know quickly: the efficiency and versatility of focus groups for NGOs in conflict and post conflict settings

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Authors:
Miller, Kenneth E.

Who is Where, When, doing What: mapping services for mental health and psychosocial support in emergencies

Mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) practitioners have, like other humanitarian aid providers, grappled with issues of coordination and associated problems, such as duplication of services, gaps in delivery and unmet needs. To combat this, a mapping tool has been developed to address the issues particular to MHPSS programming, both during and following an emergency. ‘Who is Where, When, doing What’ (4Ws) is a practical tool to assist the mapping of MHPSS interventions. This article provides a brief historical background and describes how the tool has been piloted in Jordan, Haiti, Nepal and Syria. Finally, the authors comment on two field reports on recent experiences with 4Ws mapping in Jordan and Libya, in this issue of Intervention.

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Authors:
O’ Connell, Ruth; Poudyal, Bhava; Streel, Emmanuel; Bahgat, Fahmy; Tol, Wietse; Ventevogel, Peter

From midwife in Eritrea to psychosocial worker in Egypt: a story of challenges and opportunities

The author, an Eritrean psychosocial worker in Egypt, describes how she became a refugee from persecution. As a result of her flight from Eritrea, she lost almost everything: her job, her income and ties to her family. She knows how hard the life of a refugee is, from direct experience. Originally trained as a midwife, she later became involved in psychosocial support and is now a refugee worker assisting the Eritrean community in Cairo. In this paper, a personal reflection, she describes how becoming a psychosocial helper has been important to her personal development, while at the same time has also been personally very demanding. Peer supervision has been an essential element to keeping a balance in her life.

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Authors:
Yohannes, Lebona

REVIEWS

Counseling Muslims: Handbook of Mental Health Issues and Intervention, Sameera Ahmed & Mona M. Amer (eds.) (2011), New York, Routledge. (416 pp.)

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Authors:
Aziz, Nahid

SUMMARIES

Summaries in Arabic

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Résumés en Français

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Summaries in Pashto

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Summaries in Russian

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Summaries in Sinhala

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Resumenes en Español

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Summaries in Tamil

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