Narrative Exposure Therapy for 7-to 16-year-olds: A Randomized Controlled Trial With Traumatized Refugee Children

University of Konstanz and Vivo, Konstanz, Germany.
Journal of Traumatic Stress (Impact Factor: 2.72). 08/2010; 23(4):437-45. DOI: 10.1002/jts.20548
Source: PubMed


The authors examined the effectiveness of narrative exposure therapy for children (KIDNET) in treating posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in refugee children living in exile. Twenty-six children traumatized by organized violence were randomly assigned to KIDNET or to a waiting list. Significant treatment by time interactions on all PTSD-relevant variables indicated that the KIDNET group, but not the controls, showed a clinically significant improvement in symptoms and functioning. Success of the KIDNET group remained stable at 12-month follow-up. This study confirms previous findings that, if left untreated, PTSD in children may persist for an extended period. However, it also shows that it is possible to effectively treat chronic PTSD and restore functioning in traumatized refugee children in only 8 treatment sessions.

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Available from: Thomas Elbert, Oct 04, 2015
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    • "Thus, reducing secrecy may be a promising target in the treatment of sexually abused children. Research shows that disclosing traumatic experiences (e.g., through writing and/or talking) in therapy is associated with a range of positive outcomes for adults as well as children (Bradley & Follingstad, 2001; Deblinger, Mannarino, Cohen, Runyon, & Steer, 2011; Graham-Bermann, Kulkarni, & Kanukollu, 2011; Ruf et al., 2010; Van der Oord, Lucassen, Van Emmerik, & Emmelkamp, 2010). Also, traumatized children show better recovery when they are supported by their mother when discussing the impact of traumatic experiences, compared to support by a therapist only (Berkowitz, Smith Stover, & Marans, 2011). "
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    ABSTRACT: Although child sexual abuse (CSA) is associated with psychopathology, limited research examined mechanisms through which CSA leads to psychopathology in children. It is generally assumed that CSA is associated with secrecy among children, to our knowledge this assumption has not yet been empirically tested. This gap in our understanding of the aftermath of CSA is surprising in light of abundant evidence linking secrecy to psychopathology among children. The current study examined whether, as compared to children who have not experienced CSA, CSA victims have a greater tendency for secrecy as reported by mothers and children, and whether psychopathology in CSA victims may be explained by their tendency to keep secrets. Sixty-three non-offending mothers and their sexually abused children (68.3% female; M age=10.89) and 48 mothers and their non-abused children (62.5% female; M age=11.17) completed questionnaires on secrecy and psychopathology (i.e., internalizing and externalizing behavior problems). Mothers of abused children perceived higher levels of secrecy and psychopathology in their children as compared to mothers of non-abused children. There were no differences in child-reported secrecy between abused and non-abused children. Mediation analyses revealed that mother-reported secrecy mediated the association between CSA and psychopathology. These findings suggest that secrecy is a potential mechanism underlying psychopathology associated with CSA, which has important implications for treatment of abused children. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Child Abuse & Neglect 05/2015; 46. DOI:10.1016/j.chiabu.2015.04.019 · 2.47 Impact Factor
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    • "Meanwhile, a number of studies showing the effectiveness of NET have been conducted completely independent from the originators of NET (Zang et al., 2013; Hijazi, 2012; Hijazi et al., 2014; Gwozdziewycz and Mehl-Madrona, 2013; Ejiri et al., 2012; D omen et al., 2012) and thus the NET procedure has been successfully implemented in a variety of countries (e.g., Zech and Vandenbussche, 2010; Jongedijk, 2012, 2014). NET is available in special adaptations for offenders (FORNET; Elbert et al., 2012; Hermenau et al., 2013; Crombach and Elbert, 2014) and for children and adolescents (KIDNET; Schauer et al., 2005, 2004/2011; Onyut et al., 2005; Catani et al., 2009; Ruf et al., 2010; Hermenau et al., 2012; Neuner et al., 2008a; Ruf and Schauer, 2012). "
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    ABSTRACT: This article was originally published in the International Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences, 2nd edition, published by Elsevier, and the attached copy is provided by Elsevier for the author's benefit and for the benefit of the author's institution, for non-commercial research and educational use including without limitation use in instruction at your institution, sending it to specific colleagues who you know, and providing a copy to your institution's administrator. All other uses, reproduction and distribution, including without limitation commercial reprints, selling or licensing copies or access, or posting on open internet sites, your personal or institution's website or repository, are prohibited. For exceptions, permission may be sought for such use through Elsevier's permissions site at:
    International Encyclopedia of Social & Behavioral Sciences, 2nd edited by J. Wright, 01/2015: chapter Narrative Exposure Therapy: pages 198-203;
    • "Several suggested that, after elders could not stop the genocide, the newest adult generation had lost faith in the capacity of their elders to guide them and were over-relying on peers for accounts of the past. Drawing from both the demonstrated value of collective narratives and intergenerational conversations about the past (Denborough 2008; Denborough et al. 2008; White 2005; Ruf et al. 2010), SFH was founded with a mission that was "
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    ABSTRACT: Can archives help heal and extend the benefit of therapeutic interventions in a post-genocide environment? We sought to probe this question through an uncommon collaborative documentation and research project linking psychology and archival science: Stories for Hope–Rwanda (SFH). This intergenerational dialogue project between youth and elder pairs in post-genocide Rwanda draws upon a collective narrative model from psychology and both community and participatory models from archives. The paper reports on three aspects of this endeavor: (1) description of SFH as a process of dialogue generation and archiving; (2) content analysis of the knowledge post-genocide youth sought from their elders; and (3) a qualitative evaluation of what benefits youth and elder pairs reported 6–12 months after their dialogue session, including how participants made use of a personal copy of their dialogue and their decision making and perceptions on making their dialogues more widely available. Specifically, we wanted to know whether psychological benefits would accrue if the silences about genocide could be breached by intergenerational dialogues and whether audio recordings of the dialogues archived for personal, national, and international use could motivate youths and elders over the hurdle of silence and extend the benefits of the dialogues to others. In contrast to interview-driven genocide testimonies, each youth asked an elder to answer some burning questions about the past. In response, elders were directed to share personal, true, and positively helpful stories from their past experiences. Through these efforts, SFH consciously sought to democratize the creation, control, custody, and access to the archive resulting from the recorded dialogues. Based on our analysis, we found that youth were eager to learn most about the genocide (causes, prevention, and stories of loss and survival), followed by family history, marriage, Rwandan culture, living as an orphan, and strategies for forgiveness and reconciliation. We also found that the archival component of the project significantly contributed to both the motivation for participation and the extent of participants’ healing. We conclude that this approach can be productively expanded to other post-conflict and post-genocide communities where silence about a traumatic past reigns triumphant and undermines the ability of youth to map a positive future.
    Archival Science 10/2014; 14(3-4):275-306. DOI:10.1007/s10502-014-9232-2
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