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Interventions for children affected by armed conflict: a systematic review of mental health and psychosocial support in low- and middle-income countries

JORDANS, Mark. J. D.
PIGOTT, Hugo
TOL, Wietse A
January 2016

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Over one billion children under the age of 18 live in countries affected by armed conflict. This systematic review replicates an earlier study, aiming to provide a comprehensive update of the most current developments in interventions for children affected by armed conflict. For the period 2009– 2015, a total of 1538 records were collected. Twenty-four studies met the inclusion criteria, and the included interventions involve data from 4858 children. Two types of analysis were conducted. First, for an account of intervention descriptions, thematic analysis was used to summarise themes, with a specific focus on cultural adaptations. Second, all evaluation studies reporting quantitative data were categorised into level of evidence (1 = randomized controlled trials, all types; 2 = quasi-experimental design and controlled studies; 3 = non-controlled design; 4 = case studies) 

Current Psychiatry Reports, vol 18 (9), doi:10.1007/s11920-015-0648-z

UNHCR mental health and psychosocial support for persons of concern

MEYER, Sarah
2013

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"This evaluation reports on how well the United Nations High Commission for Refugees considers and provides for the well-being and mental health of persons of concern to the agency. Through a survey of UNHCR field staff, extensive literature and policy review, and key informant interviews with MHPSS experts from academic institutions, international agencies and non-governmental organizations, this review provides insight into how UNHCR’s current activities contribute towards improved mental health and psychosocial well-being of displaced persons and how UNHCR’s current policy frameworks relate to established practices and frameworks in the MHPSS field"

Mental health and psychosocial support for conflict-related sexual violence : principles and interventions

WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION (WHO) Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse
2012

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This resource outlines principles and interventions in relation to mental health and psychosocial support for conflict-related sexual violence
WHO/RHR/HRP/12.18
"Responding to the psychosocial and mental health needs of sexual violence survivors in conflict-affected Settings"
Ferney-Voltaire, France
28-30 November 2011

Psychological first aid : guide for field workers

WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION (WHO)
WAR TRAUMA FOUNDATION (WTF)
WORLD VISION INTERNATIONAL
2011

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"This guide covers psychological first aid which involves humane, supportive and practical help to fellow human beings suffering serious crisis events. It is written for people in a position to help others who have experienced an extremely distressing event. It gives a framework for supporting people in ways that respect their dignity, culture and abilities. Despite its name, psychological first aid covers both social and psychological support"

How effective are measures taken to mitigate the impact of direct experience of armed conflict on the psychosocial and cognitive development of children aged 0–8?

LLOYD, Eva
et al
June 2005

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“This report looks at research that assesses the effectiveness of measures taken to mitigate the impact of direct experience of armed conflict on the psychosocial and cognitive development of children aged 0–8…The current review had two stages. The aim of the first stage of the review was to produce a systematic map of research by identifying and describing studies that examined the outcomes for children of interventions to mitigate the effects of direct experience of armed conflict on children aged 0–8. As a second stage of the review, (the authors) reviewed a smaller set of studies in-depth”

Mental health of populations exposed to biological and chemical weapons

WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION (WHO)
2005

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"The mental and social health consequences of exposure to biological or chemical weapons require a public health strategy. Attacks with chemical and biological weapons are likely to be accompanied by acute fear, organic mental problems, psychological responses to somatic illnesses and injuries, and long-term development of medically unexplained symptoms. The paper outlines some early social interventions, followed by descriptions of early mental health interventions"

Integrating mental health and psychosocial interventions into World Bank lending for conflict-affected populations : a toolkit

BAINGANA, Florence
BANNON, Ian
September 2004

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"The toolkit begins with a general introduction that sets the stage for mental health and psychosocial interventions in the context of conflict affected populations. A discussion of programming issues then follows which is then followed by two sections that outline the steps to take to operationalise mental health and psychosocial interventions"

Childcare and early childhood development programmes and policies : their relationship to eradicating child poverty

PENN, Helen
June 2004

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The paper explores paradigms, arguments and evidence on which international agencies draw in discussing early childhood development (ECD). These include assumptions about poverty and the role of ECD in reducing poverty, assumptions about ‘the robustness’ of ECD and the contexts in which ECD takes place. Two case studies, one from Swaziland and one from Kazakhstan are used to explore strengths and limitations. The paper concludes that almost all the evidence for the effectiveness of ECD in determining cognitive, social and economic outcomes is drawn either directly from the North, particularly from the USA, or relies on assumptions drawn from work carried out in the North as a basis for recommendations in the South. The paper points out that ECD may be a useful form of practical relief to mitigate childhood poverty in particular circumstances and this could include children affected by HIV/AIDS. There is a section on page 35 on early childhood development and HIV/AIDs. Other vulnerable children are noted as those with time poor mothers and those in situations of war and conflict

Guidelines for HIV/AIDS interventions in emergency settings

INTER-AGENCY STANDING COMMITTEE (IASC)
2003

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This document highlights the complex interaction between the HIV and AIDS epidemic and emergency situations, and calls for an integrated response during humanitarian crises. It focuses on the early phase of an emergency and topics covered include: prevention and preparedness; responding to sexual violence and exploitation; food aid and distribution; safe blood supply; condom supply and usage; women, children, orphans and refugees; post exposure prophylaxis; workplace issues; stigma and discrimination. These guidelines were designed for use by authorities, personnel and organisations operating in emergency settings

AIDS prevention in the military

FLESHMAN, Michael
June 2001

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Article looking at how war itself has been an important factor in the rapid spread of HIV/AIDS in Africa. War brings economic and social dislocation, including forced movement of refugees, separation of families, collapse of health and educaiton systems, and increased cases of rape

HIV/AIDS and children affected by armed conflict

UNITED NATIONS CHILDREN'S FUND (UNICEF)
2001

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This publication addresses the issue of how to incorporate HIV prevention and care into routine responses to complex humanitarian emergencies. It considers evidence that conflict facilitates the spread of HIV and also inhibits responses to HIV/AIDS. It reviews interventions carried out at international and national levels by UNICEF, other UN agencies and non-governmental organizations. Lessons learned are discussed and recommendations are given for UNICEF’s role in reducing the spread of HIV in situations of armed conflict

Working with the media in conflicts and other emergencies

DEPARTMENT FOR INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT (DFID)
2000

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A guide written primarily for DFID staff, highlighting the benefits, challenges and options when considering funding media/communications interventions. Includes sections on when to support such initiatives; what types of assistance to provide media organisations; how to appraise and monitor media interventions. Also supplies intervention frameworks to assist in identifying relevant interventions; advice on supporting balanced, responsible reporting; case studies; lists of relevant organisations, contacts within DFID, and further reading

Policy Paper on psychosocial interventions in Lebanon

ATAYA, Ola
SAHHAB, Layla
MOUSLEH, Dia Abou

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"This document is a policy paper that presents a design for a national plan on psychosocial interventions. It aims to develop and promote the national plan established during the July 06 war, as well as at building on the results and recommendations of psychosocial needs assessments carried out so far. It also aims to provide a tool to help develop a more comprehensive and inherent psychosocial model"

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