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Title: Experiences of displacement and psychosocial support : a phenomenological inquiry
Author: Marshall, Claire
Awarding Body: University of Wales
Current Institution: Regent's University London
Date of Award: 2013
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Despite the historical presence of forced migrants, the notion of refugees or internally displaced people is relatively new. With this, associated methods of practice and interventions have also arrived. Psychosocial supports provided by international actors aim to address psychological needs, yet there is arguably a lack of evidenced based practice in this area. Conceptualisations of the refugee experience vary from a focussing on wellbeing, to viewing mental health problems as everyday distress, to the association of trauma as a maladaptive presence, which makes psychosocial issues ubiquitous among forced migrants. There is also the issue of proportionality in generalised and specialised supports as well as the question of who should be the providers of psychosocial interventions. Based on this multilayered context, questions arise around how the psychology of displaced people should be understood and what interventions are useful and appropriate. The present research seeks to illuminate these dilemmas through a phenomenological inquiry. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with six people who had experienced internal forced displacement and lived in a camp in Uganda, Africa. It was found that the most common issues centred on physical safety, loss, suffering and coping, time, future, identity and community. The research also found that, from the point of view of the interviewees, psychosocial interventions were needed. Problematic areas cited, included: the need for more involvement and communication with displaced communities when shaping services, lack of project sustainability and the need for more culturally sensitive interventions. The research also aims to give a voice to these narratives. Finally, the research aims to contribute a new perspective on the topic; one which draws upon and integrates literature from Counselling Psychology and the forced migration and psychosocial fields.
Supervisor: McGinley, Paul Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available