Original Paper

Child & Youth Care Forum

, Volume 42, Issue 4, pp 371-388

Helping Children Exposed to War and Violence: Perspectives from an International Work Group on Interventions for Youth and Families

  • Hilit KletterAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford UniversityDivision of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Child Development, Stanford University Email author 
  • , Rebecca A. RialonAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University
  • , Nathaniel LaorAffiliated withTel Aviv-Brull Community Mental Health CenterDonald J. Cohen & Irving B. Harris Resilience Center for Trauma and Disaster Intervention by the Association for Children at RiskSackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel-Aviv UniversityChild Study Center, Yale University
  • , Daniel BromAffiliated withIsrael Center for Treatment of Psychotrauma, Herzog HospitalPaul Baerwald School of Social Work and Social Welfare Hebrew, University of Jerusalem
  • , Ruth Pat-HorenczykAffiliated withIsrael Center for Treatment of Psychotrauma, Herzog HospitalPaul Baerwald School of Social Work and Social Welfare Hebrew, University of Jerusalem
  • , Mohammed ShaheenAffiliated withCenter for Development in Primary Health Care
  • , Daniel HamielAffiliated withTel Aviv-Jaffa Academic College
  • , Claude ChemtobAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford UniversityChild Study Center, New York University
  • , Carl F. WeemsAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford UniversityDepartment of Psychology, University of New Orleans
    • , Carl FeinsteinAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University
    • , Alicia LiebermanAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford UniversityChild Trauma Research Program, UCSF Department of Psychiatry, San Francisco General Hospital
    • , Daryn ReicherterAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University
    • , Suzan SongAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford UniversityAsian Americans for Community Involvement/Center for Survivors of Torture
    • , Victor G. CarrionAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University

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Abstract

Background

This paper outlines conclusions from a three-day workgroup hosting the eight authors as well as others with expertise in the evaluation and treatment of youth exposed to war and violence.

Objective

The purpose of this meeting was to bring multiple perspectives together to identify components that comprise effective psychosocial interventions for child victims of war and community violence across cultures. The meeting also sought to identify gaps in the existing treatment approaches.

Method

In the meeting, personal experiences and previous research were discussed to develop a wide-ranging intervention approach, determine a cohesive definition for “indirect” exposure, and identify successful methods of intervention delivery for youth exposed to acts of war and violence.

Results and Conclusions

Key components of intervention for youth exposed to war/violence, important outcome measures, and cultural differences that may influence effective intervention were identified. A clearer definition of “indirect” exposure was also developed. Finally, a nine-phase model was developed to provide guidelines for establishing partnerships between trauma teams and other organizations or schools to implement and disseminate treatment for this population.

Keywords

War Violence Children Developmental trauma Treatment interventions