Next Article in Journal
Mediterranean Coastal Lagoons: The Importance of Monitoring in Sediments the Biochemical Composition of Organic Matter
Next Article in Special Issue
Exploring the Experiences of West African Immigrants Living with Type 2 Diabetes in the UK
Previous Article in Journal
Association between the Occurrence of Primary Hypothyroidism and the Exposure of the Population Near to Industrial Pollutants in São Paulo State, Brazil
Previous Article in Special Issue
Factors Associated with Access of Marital Migrants and Migrant Workers to Healthcare in Taiwan: A Questionnaire Survey with Quantitative Analysis
Article

Generalized Violence as a Threat to Health and Well-Being: A Qualitative Study of Youth Living in Urban Settings in Central America’s “Northern Triangle”

1
School of International Service, American University, Washington, DC 20016, USA
2
Center on Health, Risk, and Society, American University, Washington, DC 20016, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(18), 3465; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph16183465
Received: 8 August 2019 / Revised: 2 September 2019 / Accepted: 10 September 2019 / Published: 18 September 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Health and Wellbeing of Migrant Populations)
El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras rank among the top 10 countries experiencing violence in the world, despite not being at war. Although there is abundant literature on generalized violence in this “northern triangle” of Central America as a driver of out-migration to the United States, very little is known about the perspectives and experiences of youth who do not migrate. This study aimed to elicit the emic perspectives of youth residing in the region on how the day-to-day generalized violence produces a pervasive threat to the overall health and human security of youth as well as the key protective factors and resiliencies at work. We conducted two separate waves of qualitative research in 2015 and 2018 over a 6-month period, which included 60 in-depth interviews and six focus groups among Salvadoran, Guatemalan and Honduran youth living in urban areas. Qualitative thematic analysis revealed two meta-themes: (1) ‘Lack of health,’ defined as not experiencing peace within the family, the community, and the country’ and (2) ‘Resilience.’ Thematic clusters that reflect the first meta-theme are: (1) violence as a common occurrence; (2) living in fear and insecurity; (3) victimization; and (4) lack of state protection and services. Thematic clusters for the second meta-theme are: (1) a positive future outlook and a commitment to education; (2) transnational and local family network support; and (3) engagement in community-based youth groups. To interpret the findings, we adopt the Latin American Social Medicine and Collective Health (LASM-CH) approach that prioritizes perspectives from the region. Generalized violence is conceptualized as a systemic phenomenon that is generated and reproduced through the complex interactions of structural inequities and unequal power relations. The findings of this study provide new insights into the implementation of a different approach to address the generalized violence, insights that may guide multi-sectoral health policies and interventions both in the region and transnationally. View Full-Text
Keywords: generalized violence; youth; northern triangle; Central America; social determinants of health generalized violence; youth; northern triangle; Central America; social determinants of health
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

De Jesus, M.; Hernandes, C. Generalized Violence as a Threat to Health and Well-Being: A Qualitative Study of Youth Living in Urban Settings in Central America’s “Northern Triangle”. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16, 3465. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph16183465

AMA Style

De Jesus M, Hernandes C. Generalized Violence as a Threat to Health and Well-Being: A Qualitative Study of Youth Living in Urban Settings in Central America’s “Northern Triangle”. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2019; 16(18):3465. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph16183465

Chicago/Turabian Style

De Jesus, Maria, and Carissa Hernandes. 2019. "Generalized Violence as a Threat to Health and Well-Being: A Qualitative Study of Youth Living in Urban Settings in Central America’s “Northern Triangle”" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 16, no. 18: 3465. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph16183465

Find Other Styles
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Back to TopTop