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Article

Assessing the Feasibility of Providing a Family Skills Intervention, “Strong Families”, for Refugee Families Residing in Reception Centers in Serbia

1
Prevention, Treatment and Rehabilitation Section, Drug Prevention and Health Branch, Division of Operations, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), Wagramer Strasse 5, A-1400 Vienna, Austria
2
United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, Program Office Serbia, Bulevar Zorana Djindjica 64, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Authors’ information: The views expressed in this Article do not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations or its officials or Member States.
Academic Editor: Paul Tchounwou
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(9), 4530; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18094530
Received: 25 March 2021 / Revised: 20 April 2021 / Accepted: 21 April 2021 / Published: 24 April 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ensure Healthy Lives and Promote Wellbeing for All at All Ages)
War exposure and forced displacement threatens the wellbeing of caregivers and their children, leaving them at risk of negative outcomes, such as elevated rates of anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. The importance of engaged, responsive and stable parenting for positive child wellbeing has been documented across diverse cultural and economic backgrounds. Despite the higher need for caregivers to be nurturing in challenging settings, they struggle to provide adequate support for their children due to lack of resources or their inability to deal with their own emotional challenges. A feasibility study was conducted of a new, open-access and light-touch family skills intervention, Strong Families (for families in humanitarian and challenged settings) on refugee families residing in Reception Centers in Serbia. Questionnaires and interviews were completed by participating caregivers and facilitators. Qualitative results indicated that the intervention was feasible to run in this humanitarian context, that caregivers viewed the intervention as culturally acceptable and complemented the quantitative results that showed promise for enhancing child behavior and family functioning tested indicators. Despite being a light intervention, Strong Families indicated improvement on child mental health, parenting practices and parent and family adjustment skills. Prioritizing family mental health and functioning as a primary need that parallels that of accessing physical medical care, sanitation and clean water must be the definitive next step in humanitarian aid. View Full-Text
Keywords: refugee; family skills; “strong families”, parenting; displaced population; war refugee; family skills; “strong families”, parenting; displaced population; war
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MDPI and ACS Style

El-Khani, A.; Haar, K.; Stojanovic, M.; Maalouf, W. Assessing the Feasibility of Providing a Family Skills Intervention, “Strong Families”, for Refugee Families Residing in Reception Centers in Serbia. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 4530. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18094530

AMA Style

El-Khani A, Haar K, Stojanovic M, Maalouf W. Assessing the Feasibility of Providing a Family Skills Intervention, “Strong Families”, for Refugee Families Residing in Reception Centers in Serbia. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(9):4530. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18094530

Chicago/Turabian Style

El-Khani, Aala, Karin Haar, Milos Stojanovic, and Wadih Maalouf. 2021. "Assessing the Feasibility of Providing a Family Skills Intervention, “Strong Families”, for Refugee Families Residing in Reception Centers in Serbia" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18, no. 9: 4530. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18094530

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