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The impact of psychosocial support on well-being and agency within an inclusive livelihood programme

1 PhD in Social Psychology, Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Specialist at Humanity & Inclusion, Freelance, Belgium
2 MSc in Public Health, Inclusive Livelihood Coordinator at Humanity & Inclusion, Freelance, Belgium
3 MSc Public Health and MBA Political Sciences, Information Management Specialist, Freelance, Belgium

Correspondence Address:
Davide Ziveri,
Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Specialist, Humanity & Inclusion, Avenue Wolvendael 3/10, 1190 Brussels
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/INTV.INTV_26_18

After 7 years of a multifaceted conflict, effective humanitarian assistance for people living in Syria is vital. This action-research explores the extent to which psychosocial support (PSS) impacts the well-being and agency of Syrian farmers benefitting from livelihood. Our methodology used a baseline and endline survey towards a target population of households receiving agricultural inputs, with both an experimental and control group. Five dimensions of well-being were considered: emotional, social, economic, skills and knowledge and overall feeling. The key findings are:
  • A stand-alone livelihood programme does in fact have a positive impact on psychosocial well-being;
  • An integrated PSS and livelihood programme, as expected, has a positive impact on psychosocial well-being;
  • There is larger comparative impact of an integrated PSS-livelihood programme compared to a stand-alone livelihood programme for beneficiaries;
  • We learned that compared to those without disabilities, beneficiaries with disabilities experienced a larger benefit from PSS.
These results strongly suggest that an integrated approach providing PSS alongside livelihood interventions has added-value for vulnerable persons to restore their resilience. The results of this pilot study would need to be confirmed by a larger scale study to validate the findings.

Key implications for practice
  • Measure of the impact of psychosocial interventions in conflict settings.
  • New model of livelihood programme.
  • Focus on people with disabilities in armed conflicts.

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