Resource: Community-Based MHPSS in Areas of Mass Violence (MSF)

MSF has published a manual that provides a good basis for psychosocial interventionists responding to man-made crises. It’s basic and intended for coordinators and lay people.

Psychosocial and Mental Health Interventions in Areas of Mass Violence: A Community-Based Approach by Kaz de Jong for Medicins Sans Frontieres/ Doctors without Borders. March 2011

I think it would be a useful tool in communicating and psychoeducation, especially for non-mental health colleagues or community partners. When you work in this field for many years, it’s easy to forget that most people don’t have fully developed concepts around trauma or coping. This manual reminds you of the basics.

The manual’s very useful elements specific to international social work include: guidance on treating psychiatric emergencies, providing health education in the context of a traumatized or fragmented community, working with patients with TB or HIV/ AIDS, and treating patients who have been exposed to chemical and biological warfare.

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