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- Journal of Psychology in Africa
- OA African Journal Archive
- Volume 2, Issue 1, 1997
Journal of Psychology in Africa - Volume 2, Issue 1, 1997
Volumes & issues
Volume 2, Issue 1, 1997
Author Annie SampaSource: Journal of Psychology in Africa 2, pp 01 –23 (1997)More Less
The author discusses the origins of the street children in Lusaka, Zambia. Poverty is a necessary, but not sufficient' 'condition for children moving to the streets. Through an examination of published statistics and through qualitative analysis of questionnaire and interview data obtained from street children between the ages of four and eight, the author presents several reasons for the children being on the streets. Derived from the children's narratives, these include physical and or mental abuse such as being denied food, being forced 'to carry out heavy tasks or menial household duties, or ironically the desire to enjoy freedom with their friends on the streets. The author also discusses the survival strategies adopted by these street children, extending the causes to the extended family and society and their role in child development.
Source: Journal of Psychology in Africa 2, pp 02 –13 (1997)More Less
The role played by non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in South Africa is dedicated by the prevailing socio-political conditions which inform the funding policies of donar agencies. NGOs have played a significant role in contributing to the transformation of South Africa to a democratic dispensation, particularly during the 1980s when resistance against the repressive apartheid government increased dramatically. With the dawn of a new era and the move towards a democratic government, many NGOs are being forced to question their role in the post-apartheid South Africa and more specifically their role in relationship to the state. This paper is a response to the growing need for new directives and formulations for NGOs with a specific focus on mental health NGOs. The first part of the paper defines NGOs and provides a contextual framework for understanding the role played by NGOs. The second part examines the role played by mental health NGOs in South Africa before, during and after political transition. Finally, given the current crisis facing mental health care in South Africa and the likely trajectory for the future, new directives and formulations for mental health NGOs are suggested.
Author Peter F. OmoluabiSource: Journal of Psychology in Africa 2, pp 14 –28 (1997)More Less
Author Aidan MambweSource: Journal of Psychology in Africa 2, pp 24 –33 (1997)More Less
The author presents findings from a recent study of the main life stressors of street children in Lusaka, Zambia: The sample consisted of 70 male and 30 female street children betweel1 the ages of nine and 18. Most of the children lived at home with b9th parents, but a sizable minority lived on the streets with peers. The most common stressor was hick of proper homes, lack of employment by parent(s), lack of education, violence, and hunger. The author concludes that the stressors originate from the changing national economy, growing urbanization, and broken families. Street children cope with their problems either by cognitive restructuring of their circumstances, adapting practical solutions to their problems, and by the maladaptive approach of avoidance. The author calls for more professional intervention strategies to help the children to learn positive coping skills.
Aspectos psicologicos e sociologicos da tenta tiv a de suicidio entre as empregadas domesticas Afro-BrasililelrasAuthor Chirly Dos Santos-StubbeSource: Journal of Psychology in Africa 2, pp 29 –50 (1997)More Less
Based on a random group of 130 Afro-Brazilian empregadas domesticas (Domestic Workers) in Rio de Janeiro, the author analyses a number of psychological, psychiatric and sociological factors responsible for the high rate of suicidal attempts in this occupational group. The essay's core is a theory-focused discussion of these factors. Considering further data compiled by other writers, the author comes to the conclusion that these women present a risk group on the account of their working, life and health conditions.
Author Lewis AptekarSource: Journal of Psychology in Africa 2, pp 34 –53 (1997)More Less
The commonly used term ""street 'child"" glosses over the differences between the genders. Ethnographic information and psychological case studies (consisting of a structured interview and standard psychological tests) of 51 male and 26 female street children, and 15 of their siblings who were not street children were collected in Nairobi, Kenya. The first hypothesis, that the mental health of male street children would be better than the mental health of female street children was confirmed. The second hypothesis, that the male siblings who stayed at-home, would have poorer mental health than their brothers who were on the streets, was also confirmed. Finally, the third hypothesis that the female siblings who stayed at home would have poorer mental health than their siblings who went into the street was also confirmed (albeit with less statistical significance). The above hypotheses were based on the idea that poor male children were in part reared to adopt street life, whereas poor female street children were reared to stay home. Ethnographic data is also used to explain the results. Mitigating methodological consideration are discussed.
Author Elizabeth MaosaSource: Journal of Psychology in Africa 2, pp 51 –63 (1997)More Less
The study investigated the use of outright denial, hopelessness, invulnerability and rationalization ~ self-deception mechanisms with regard to AIDS. 70 male and female subjects (mean age 20) from Chancellor College, University of Malawi, filled in a questionnaire based on an attributional scale by Seligman (1975). The results showed that for the subjects the use of self-deception mechanisms were dependent on the riskness of their behaviours. Despite the knowledge of AIDS, subjects used self-deception mechanisms in order to preserve their self-esteem and maintain their psychological wellbeing. Finally, the findings are discussed in view of tailoring different messages of AIDS campaigns to different populations in Malawi.
Relationship between parents' interest, life status and the academic achievement of Xhosa children in South AfricaSource: Journal of Psychology in Africa 2, pp 54 –66 (1997)More Less
This study researched the relationship between parental interest, life status and academic achievement of 1021 Xhosa pupils (369 boys and 652 girls) whose ages ranged from 13 to 17 years (Mean age, 15.6 yr). The sample included 712 children for whom both parents were alive and 308 children for whom either or both parents were deceased. Children were chosen at random from the Standard 7 / Grade 9 erstwhile South African homeland of Transkei which remains incorporated into the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa. A questionnaire was used to obtain information on parental interest, life status and socioeconomic status. The aggregate of the marks awarded to pupils in seven subject areas in the Standard 7 examination held by the Department of Education was used as the criterion measure. Analysis of variance showed a significant relationship between parental interest and academic achievement of children from parents-living as well as parents-deceased homes except at low and high socioeconomic levels in parents-deceased homes among boys and at low socioeconomic level among boys in parents-living homes. The results are discussed contextually.
Author B.Y. OladimejiSource: Journal of Psychology in Africa 2, pp 64 –80 (1997)More Less
Prior to contacts with the Europeans, traditional healing systems took care of the mentally ill. Orthodox mental health sevices in Nigeria started with the establishment of asylums for custodial care of aggressive and violent patients. With the establishment of psychiatric hospitals and units in various parts of the country, orthodox mental health practitioners from various disciplines and backgrounds started to render treatment and rehabilitation services. The increase in the number of mental health practitioners in recent times is commendable, though still inadequate for the population. Most of these practitioners are foreign-trained. They come equipped with assessment techniques and therapy methods, validated and standardised in other cultural settings. They in turn transfer the imported conceptual systems and approaches to their elite trainees, just like the imported technologies in the industrial sectors. The result is the observed dual perception and parallel growth in the field of mental health practice and research. The paper reviews attempts by practitioners to transfer and apply known theoretical concepts and mental health technology in the context of a developing country like Nigeria. The thrust of the paper is on the need for a critical appraisal of currently employed psychotechnology. As in the discussions of industrial technology transfer from the developed world, experience has shown the need to evolve appropriate psychotechnology in terms of self-reliance; needs responsiveness or relevance; cultural compatibility; institutional feasibility; economic suitability and political practicality.
Organisation and structure of counselling and therapy services for victims of organised violence in AfricaSource: Journal of Psychology in Africa 2, pp 67 –97 (1997)More Less
Little is available on how major (psychosocial) health service providers for victims of organised violence develop and organise their services. The organisation and structure of counselling and therapy services for victims of organized violence in Africa can be divided into two broad categories: (1) those based in the home country of the victims where there is a present or past history of political repression, and (2) those situated in host countries that are in the same region of the world as the refugees' home country. Therefore, I descriptionbe my experiences as a therapist, trainer and consultant to the International Institute for Psycho-social and Socio-ecological Research Amsterdam (IPSER) in Uganda (1994,95,96) (as an example for case 2) and to the International Rehabilitation Council for Torture Victims Copenhagen (IRCT) in Malawi (1994, 95-96) (as an example for case 1). These service providers are two major organisations for providing (psychosocial) health care to victims of organised violence. The research presented here is based on centre and community based services but also by making use of epidemiological studies and literature review. The results and discussion are divided into: (1) initiation of project/service and target population, (2) concepts and objectives, (3) administration and funding, (4) training and supervision, (5) public relations and networking, (6) research and documentation, and (7) evaluation/monitoring counselling/treatment.
Author Stephen D. EdwardsSource: Journal of Psychology in Africa 2, pp 101 –122 (1997)More Less
This paper is concerned with a narrative of community psychology broadly viewed as a story of intervention in the unfolding communal world of the psyche. The narrative has international, national and regional themes in keeping with North American, South African and Zululand contexts. A universal and perennial, yet new and changing narrative of community psychology emerges with special reference to recent developmental in South Africa in general and Zululand in particular.
Source: Journal of Psychology in Africa 2, pp 123 –141 (1997)More Less
In many African countries street children have been around since independence. In Swaziland, their existence is relatively new and there are relatively few of street children. This situation presented an opportunity for the authors to explore some hypotheses about the origins of street children. The authors conclude that rural to urban migration is not a sufficient explanation for the origins of Swazi street children. Instead they contribute the problem to the failure of government and families to come to compromises over important long-standing cultural differences between males and females and among parents and children, particularly among fathers and son. In order to improve this situation, the authors chose a sample of 30 male and 9 female street children from the two largest urban areas in Swaziland to participate in an experimental teacher-training program. The results of this program are discussed.
Source: Journal of Psychology in Africa 2, pp 142 –170 (1997)More Less
Psychology as a scientific discipline has a long way to go towards getting a foothold in sub-Saharan Africa. The aim of the paper is to review the health status, the mental health and behaviour-related health problems in view of identifying the role of psychology. Then psychological interventions (traditional and faith healing, psychotherapy, health and community psychology interventions) are outlined. Finally, considering African contexts reasons for increased recognition on the role of psychological and behavioural factors in the maintenance of health and prevention of illness are stressed.
Source: Journal of Psychology in Africa 2, pp 171 –185 (1997)More Less
The authors investigated the prevalence and risk factors of childhood incestuous abuse in the Northern Province (South Africa). High School students in Standard 9 and 10 in representative High Schools in the province filled in a retrospective self-rating questionnaire in a classroom setting. Result shows that the overall prevalence is 15.2%. The risk factors are 'dwelling in a village', 'parents are unemployed or labourers', 'highest education of the father is below standard 6', 'natural biological mother was not living with participant until he/she was at least 16 years old', 'participant was leaving in a Group Home before he/she was 16 years old', 'participant did not feel loved or cared for by the parents/step/foster parents before he/she was 8 years old'. We recommend the above risk factors for' proper consideration while planning preventive strategies and campaign against childhood incestuous abuse, and therapy for victims in the province.
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder among North Sotho speaking primary school children in South Africa: prevalence and sex ratiosAuthor Anneke MeyerSource: Journal of Psychology in Africa 2, pp 186 –195 (1997)More Less
This study presents a first attempt to conduct an epidemiological survey of Attention Deficit Disorder (ADHD) among primary school children in the Northern Province of South Africa. The main purpose of the study is to establish the prevalence rate of this disorder in samples of primary school children. More than two thousand North Sotho speaking children from six primary schools participated in the survey. Teacher rating scales based on DSM-IV were used. The results obtained are consistent in many aspects with those from previously published research. The usual differences of age and sex were found. Overall, these findings suggest that the prevalence of ADHD and instrument used for its assessment 'are not affected by cultural variables.