n Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology - A social work model for support to persons affected by crime in the North-West Province of South Africa

Volume 20, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1012-8093



The article focuses on the development of a model for providing support services to people affected by crime, specifically in rural areas which are characterised by limited infrastructure and financial resources. The research was structured according to the Intervention Research Model within the qualitative research approach. Data was collected by means of a literature study, a comparison of the systems of victim support in the Netherlands and South Africa, as well as interviews using a semi-structured interview schedule. A model was developed and illustrated in the format of a support network. The model provides for the organisation of institutions in four concentric panels in order to ensure a co-ordinated provision of professional and community-based support services. Panel 1 represents the services at the police station where the crime is reported; Panel 2 provides for specialised therapeutic and protective support; Panel 3 includes the generic professional services that are provided by social workers, while Panel 4 provides for general emotional and practical support by community-based organisations. It is clear that the actual content and organisation of the network will be determined by the unique situation in the particular area.

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