Positive psychology and refugee mental health: implications for social work practice

Li, Wendy, and Francis, Abraham P. (2014) Positive psychology and refugee mental health: implications for social work practice. In: Francis, Abraham P., (ed.) Social Work in Mental Health: contexts and theories for practice. SAGE, New Delhi, India, pp. 163-181.

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[Extract] Refugee mental health is an issue that has been debated globally. In this chapter, positive psychology and strengths-based approaches are employed to discuss the mental health of refugees. Based on the evidences from the literature, the authors highlight some of the implications for social work practice. The chapter also provides a brief overview of refugee mental health issues and gives some suggestions and tips to enhance the development of social work practice and training.

According to the United Nations' 1951 Convention, refugees are persons who have crossed an international boundary because they are unable or unwilling to avail themselves of the protection of their former country due to a well-founded fear of persecution based on political opinions, race, religion, nationality or membership of a particular social group (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees [UNHCR] 2010). Such persecution may mean execution, torture, imprisonment without trial, mistreatment and/or other serious denials of rights. In other words, 'refugee' is an internationally accepted legal term to describe someone needing protection from another country because they are being targeted in their own country by authorities or other groups involved in an organised violent campaign. It cannot be applied to people seeking to escape random violations of their rights, escaping violence in a civil conflict, fleeing natural disasters or escaping starvation (New South Wales Refugee Health Service 2004).

Item ID: 34319
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
ISBN: 978-81-321-1739-1
Keywords: positive psychology, refugees, post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, depression, strength-based approach, resilience, post-traumatic growth
Date Deposited: 04 Aug 2014 05:00
FoR Codes: 17 PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES > 1701 Psychology > 170106 Health, Clinical and Counselling Psychology @ 50%
17 PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES > 1701 Psychology > 170113 Social and Community Psychology @ 50%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920410 Mental Health @ 100%
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