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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 15  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 192-198

Introduction to Special Issue: linking mental health and psychosocial support to peacebuilding in an integrated way

1 Mphil, is senior project leader, Great Horn Desk, Justice and Reconciliation in Africa Programme, in the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation, Cape Town, South Africa
2 consultant for War Trauma Foundation on this project ‘Psycho-social needs, practice and peacebuilding: Towards a collaborative framework’ and is Editor in Chief of Intervention

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.1097/WTF.0000000000000160

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Across the world, many communities have been affected by conflict, violence and war. The impact of this suffering can vary enormously and ranges from political division to economic hard ship, and from infrastructure destruction to social fragmentation. No matter which lens is used to understand how conflict affects society, human suffering remains the common denominator. However, global definitions of peacebuilding and international practice do not sufficiently recognise the impact of violent conflict on psychosocial wellbeing, nor do they recognise that mental health and psychosocial support processes are essential and need to be integrated. The goal of this Special Issue is to profile a selection of relevant contemporary efforts aimed at bringing the fields of mental health and psychosocial support and peacebuilding closer together, and to make the case for the need for an integrated approach.

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