Narrative and Systemic Approaches with Refugee Populations

Topics: Internally displaced person, Refugee, Displaced person Pages: 3 (896 words) Published: November 24, 2013

Narrative and Systemic Approaches with Refugee Populations

Colleen Cummings
SOWK 5208 - 090
August 7, 2013
Narrative and Systemic Approaches with Refugee Populations
In today’s world millions of displaced people have had to flee or have been forced to leave their homes. These people may be internally displaced within their own borders or living in another country with refugee status, having left due to war, natural disasters, shifts in political allegiances, ethnic conflicts, and more. It is important that practitioners and professionals be aware of the best practices with this population because once granted refugee status in the U.S., the country has taken on responsibility of offering services and support for a person to assimilate and become a productive and well functioning citizen. Differing Frameworks with Similar Techniques

Since countries become responsible for the new citizens admitted as refugees, many countries have witnessed that when there is an increase of people entering with refugee status there is a parallel crisis in meeting their needs (Kelley, 1994). The need for expansion and relevant services offered to refugees is because of the extremely vulnerable position refugees are in and the things they are exposed to that contributed to their resettlement. According to Walter & Ahearn (2012) “refugees are likely to have exposure to political violence, separation from family in countries of origin, and experiences of trauma both before and during the process of immigration to the United States,” making the need for services the rule and not the exception (p. 362).

Although the trends of refugees entering the country have been down in recent decades, statistics from the U.S. Department of Homeland security reported that 74,602 refugees entered the U.S. in 2009, an increase of 24% from the previous year (as cited in Walter & Ahearn, 2012). This shows that...

References: Elbert, T. (2004) A comparison of narrative exposure therapy, supportive counseling and psychoeducation for treating posttraumatic stress disorder in an African refugee settlement. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology. 72, 579-587
Kelley, P. (1994) Integrating systemic and postsystemic approaches to social work practice with refugee families. Families in Society. 75, 517.
Walter, J. A. & Ahearn, F. L.(2012). Displaced people. Encyclopedia of Social Work (20th ed.). Washington, DC: Oxford University Press. Retrieved from: 195306613.001.0001/acref-9780195306613-e-110#
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