Clinical Social Work Journal

, Volume 42, Issue 4, pp 346–356

Perceived Need for Psychosocial Services in the Context of Political Violence: Psychological Distress Among Israeli Mothers with Young Children

Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10615-013-0471-0

Cite this article as:
Schiff, M. & Pat-Horenczyk, R. Clin Soc Work J (2014) 42: 346. doi:10.1007/s10615-013-0471-0


The current study investigated the association between mothers’ perceived need for psychosocial services due to exposure to political violence, and theirs and their children’s psychological distress. A representative sample of 904 Israeli mothers of young children aged 2–6 were asked to fill out a questionnaire about exposure to war and other types of trauma, psychological distress, social support, and perceived need for help. The results showed that mothers who reported a need for psychosocial services due to exposure to political violence had higher levels of exposure to political violence, depressive symptoms and more emotional problems in their young children than mothers who reported no need for help. Those who reported a need for psychosocial services also had less social support even when all other variables are controlled. Furthermore, Arab mothers and mothers with low family income perceived a greater need for psychosocial services. The implications of this study are relevant for policies of outreach to vulnerable groups in situations of ongoing political violence.


Perceived need for psychosocial services Mass trauma Depression Social support Mothers of young children Help-seeking Political violence 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Paul Baerwald School of Social Work and Social WelfareThe Hebrew University of JerusalemJerusalemIsrael
  2. 2.The Israel Center for the Treatment of PsychotraumaJerusalemIsrael

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