The understanding and approach of trained volunteer counsellors to negative racial sentiments in traumatized clients.

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dc.contributor.author Sibisi, Hleziphi
dc.date.accessioned 2009-03-02T08:35:20Z
dc.date.available 2009-03-02T08:35:20Z
dc.date.issued 2009-03-02T08:35:20Z
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10539/6585
dc.description.abstract In the current South African context there is a strong likelihood of the occurrence of trauma incidents that involve people of different races. Anecdotal evidence suggests that this has contributed to the increased expression of negative racial sentiments by victims of trauma, especially in crime related trauma, when the perpetrator/s are of a different race group to the victim. This research study locates itself within the small number of studies that have sought to engage with the problem of negative racial sentiments as a response to trauma. This study focused particularly on the observations, explanations and interventions of volunteer counsellors in having to engage with this content in traumatized clients. The study sought to understand the impact that the expression of negative racial sentiments had on the process of trauma counselling and debriefing and on counsellors personally. The research was operationalized within a hermeneutically oriented qualitative research framework. The participant group was comprised of 11 volunteer counsellors from different parts of Johannesburg and from different organizations. Participants were chosen through purposive sampling and face to face semi-structured interviews were used as the method of data collection. Thematic content analysis was employed to analyze the interview texts. The findings suggest that negative racial sentiments are a commonly occurring response following a trauma. Counsellors predominantly understand negative racial sentiments to be part of the trauma symptom pattern, in that they explain such responses as ‘trigger’ reactions. Counsellors also understood the sentiments to represent pre-existing prejudice, exaggerated and re-evoked by the trauma. The findings indicate that counsellors were developing and utilizing skills and interventions mainly of their own design in engaging with negative racial sentiments, as they are generally not trained on how to engage with this content in trauma counselling. Counsellors use interventions such as normalizing, psychoeducation and CBT based interventions when they do intervene, but in some cases make a choice not to intervene. Counsellors reported considerable discomfort and suggested that although case by case intervention was important, some guidance as to how to work in this area would be useful. The contextual nature of the problem and related interventions was also highlighted. en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.subject Traumatized clients en
dc.subject Volunteer counsellors en
dc.subject Racism en
dc.title The understanding and approach of trained volunteer counsellors to negative racial sentiments in traumatized clients. en
dc.type Thesis en


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