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ARTICLE
Year : 2018  |  Volume : 16  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 103-109

Trauma-related mental health problems and effectiveness of a stress management group in national humanitarian workers in the Central African Republic


1 Emergency Team SOS Villages d’Enfants (SOS Childen’s Villages), Bangui, Central African Republic
2 Action Contre la Faim (Action Against Hunger), Paris, France

Correspondence Address:
Capucine de Fouchier
Emergency Team SOS Villages d’Enfants (SOS Childen’s Villages), Bangui
Central African Republic
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/INTV.INTV_9_18

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The aim of this study is to assess the levels of anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in national aid workers in Central African Republic as well as to evaluate the effectiveness of a stress management group in reducing those symptoms. Twenty-seven stress management groups were evaluated in two international non-governmental organisations in which 197 national humanitarian aid workers took part. There was a significant decrease in the intensity of every psychopathological variable tested despite a decrease in the sample between the pre- and post-tests. At post-test, 8.1, 5.1 and 11.1% of the participants had scores indicating anxiety, depression and PTSD compared to 25, 18.9 and 26% at pre-test. The group intervention has demonstrated to be a realistic, effective and cost-effective way to respond to mental health problems in national aid workers living in a context of ongoing violence and where access to specialised services is extremely limited. Key implications for practice
  • Documenting the mental health of national humanitarian staff working in unsecure environment in Central African Republic
  • A one session stress management group protocol can reduce the levels of anxiety, depression and PTSD in this population and hence demonstrating that it is feasible and cost-effective for organizations to honour their duty of care towards national humanitarian workers
  • Further research is needed to confirm these preliminary results, especially in other cultural and humanitarian contexts.


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