Monday, December 4, 2017

Managing Trauma: Tips for Supporting Refugee Teens in Schools, Refugee Resettlement, & Other Contexts

As follow-up from today's webinar, please feel free to continue the discussion below!

This webinar builds off of BRYCS previous webinar on Understanding Trauma in Refugee Youth. Hugo Kamya, PhD, Professor and Fulbright Specialist Roster Scholar at the Simmons College School of Social and Lisa Fontes, PhD, Senior Lecturer at the University of Massachusetts encourage you to reflect on your work and relationships with refugee teens. Participants will learn about some of the dilemmas facing refugee teenagers, how to converse helpfully and meaningfully with refugee teens, as well as ways to intervene more effectively with refugee teens, their families, and schools.  http://brycs.org/webinars.cfm

Additional resources:

Blanco-Vega, C.O., Castro-Olivio, S.M., & Merrel, K.W., (2008). Sociocultural model for development and implementation of culturally specific interventions. Journal of Latinos and Education, 7(1),43-61.
Boyson, B… & Short, D. (2012). Helping newcomer students achieve success in secondary schools and beyond. Washington, D.C.: Center for Applied Linguistics.
BRYCS. (2017). Collective Voices for Improving the Care & Reducing the Risk of Female Genital Cutting (FGC). http://www.brycs.org/clearinghouse/highlighted-resources-on-female-genital-cutting.cfm
BRYCS. (2010). Child Abuse Issues with Refugee Populations (PART I)- Recognizing Suspected Child Maltreatment in Culturally Diverse Refugee Families http://www.brycs.org/clearinghouse/clearinghouse-resource.cfm?docnum=2475
BRYCS. (2010). Child Abuse Issues with Refugee Populations (PART II)- Refugee Resettlement and Child Welfare: Working Together for Child Protectionhttp://www.brycs.org/clearinghouse/clearinghouse-resource.cfm?docnum=2479
Chapman, C., Laird, J., Hill, N., & Ramani, A.K. (2011). Trends in High School Dropout ad Completion Rates in the United States: 1979-2009.  Washington, DC: US Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics.
Fontes, L.A. (2005). Child Abuse and Culture: Working with Diverse Families. New York, NY: Guilford.
Fontes, L.A. (2008). Interviewing Clients Across Cultures. New York, NY: Guilford Press.
Fontes, L.A. (2008). Interviewing Clients across Cultures: A Practitioner’s Guide. New York, NY: Guilford.
Fontes, L.A. (2010). Interviewing immigrant children for suspected child maltreatment. Journal of Psychiatry and the Law, 38, 283-305. 
Fontes, L.A. (2015). Invisible Chains: Overcoming Coercive Control in Your Intimate Relationship. New York, NY: Guilford.
Fontes, L.A. (2017). Building Resilience After Trauma: Lessons from Chile. New York, NY: Psychology Today. https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/invisible-chains/201511/building-resilience-after-trauma-lessons-chile
Fontes, L.A. (2017). Helping Refugee Children Cope. New York, NY: Psychology Today. https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/invisible-chains/201706/helping-refugee-children-cope
Fontes, L.A. (2017). Keeping Refugee Children and Teens Safe. New York, NY: Psychology Today. https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/invisible-chains/201708/keeping-refugee-children-and-teens-safe
Fontes, L.A. (2017). Translating Trauma: Foreign Language Interpreting in Therapy. New York, NY: Psychology Today. https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/invisible-chains/201703/translating-trauma-foreign-language-interpreting-in-therapy
Jensen, L. (2005). The demographic diversity of immigrants and their children. In R.G. Rumbaut & A. Portes (Eds.) Ethnicities: Children of immigrants in America ((pp. 21-56). Berkley, CA: University of California Press.
Kamya, H. (2008). Healing from Refugee Trauma: The Significance of Spiritual Beliefs, Faith Community, and Faith-based Services. In  Froma Walsh (Ed.). Spiritual resources in family therapy (286-300).  2rd edition.  New York: Guilford Press. 
Kamya, H. (2009). The impact of war on children: How children make meaning from war     experiences. Journal of Immigrant and refugee Studies, 7, 2, 211-216
Kamya, H. (2011). The impact of war on children:  The psychology of displacement and exile.  In Kelle, B. (Ed.). Interpreting Exile: Interdisciplinary studies of displacement and deportation in Biblical and modern contexts. (pp.235-249). Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature Press.
Kamya, H.  & Mirkin, M.(2008). Working with immigrant and refugee families. In Monica   McGoldrick and Kenneth Hardy (Eds.). Revisioning Family Therapy: Race, culture and gender in clinical practice. 2nd edition. (pp. 311-326). New York: Guilford Press.(a  revised chapter is coming out 2018 in 3rd edition)
Kamya, H. & White, E. (2011).  Expanding cross-cultural understanding of suicide among immigrants: The case of the Somali.  Families in Society, 92(4), 419-425.
Kamya, H. (2012). The cultural universality of narrative techniques  in the creation of meaning.  In B. MacKin, Newman, E., Fogler, J., & Keane, T. (Eds.) Trauma therapy in context:  The science and craft of evidence based practice. (pp.231-246). Washington, D.C: American Psychological Association.
McBrien, J.L. (2005). Educational needs and barriers for refugee students in the United States: A review of the literature.  Review of Educational Research, 75(3), 329-364.
Muslim Youth Girls Association. (2010). Top 5: Gym Class Hijabi Tips. http://muslimyouthgirlsassociation.blogspot.com/2010/05/top-5gym-class-hijabi-tips.html
National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN). Types of Trauma. http://www.nctsn.org/trauma-types
Mendenhall, M., Bartlett, L., & Ghaffar-Kucher, A. (2017). ‘If you need help, they are always there for us.”: Education for refugees in an International High School in NYC.  Urban Review, 49, 1-25.
Paat, Y. (2013). Working with immigrant children and their families: An application of Bronfenbrenner’s ecological systems theory. Journal of Human Behavior in the Social Environment, 23, 954-966.
Paat, Y. (2013). Understanding the role of immigrant families’ cultural and structural mechanisms in immigrant children’s experiences beyond high school: Lessons for social work practitioners. Journal of Human Behavior in the Social Environment, 23, 514-528.
Presidential Task Force on Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and Trauma in Children and Adolescents. (2008). Children and Trauma: Update for Mental Health Professionals. Washington, D.C: American Psychological Association. http://www.apa.org/pi/families/resources/children-trauma-update.aspx  
Schneider, S. & Kamya, H. (in press). Community-Based Services for Refugees and Immigrants: Utilizing Social Capital, Human Capital and Cultural Capital to Improve Family Functioning and Well-Being Among the Somali, Families in Society.
Tseng, V. (2006). Unpacking immigration in youths’ academic and occupational pathways. Child Development, 77(5), 1434-1445.
Watkinson, J.S. & Hersi, A.A. (2013). School counselors supporting African immigrant students’ career development: A case study. The Career Development Quarterly, 62, 44-55.
Yohani, S. (2010) Nurturing hope in refugee children during early years of post-war adjustment. Children and Youth Services Review, 32, 865-873.

23 comments:

  1. Remember for some refugee teens, birthday's are "iffy". They are often both "old" and "young" for their age, and what we consider teen years, varies in other cultures. Have you experienced challenges with determining a teen's age?

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    1. Ya it is, currently I am working with one of my client whose age is reduced by 10 years...

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    2. When I held the group after school at a high school, the girls were very conscious of time because they needed to go home to cook for their siblings and get them ready for bedtime.

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    3. We need to look at the problems in context. Many students were referred to me for "anger management." However, we found out that the students felt disrespected by teachers because "teachers treated them like kids" but they have been carrying financial responsibilities in their families since they were 8, 10 so they are expected to be treated as a grown man.

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    4. Such a good example. In Central America many of our low income kids have been responsible for selling produce in the markets after school or during the weekends since they are 6 or 7.

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  2. I know many teens who, as new arrivals, are placed in a Public High School and almost immediately bullied. Wouldn't it be helpful if new arrivals were "assigned" to a student friend who can accompany them from class-to-class (obviously cannot be in same classes, since most do spend a good part of the day in ESL classes)? How can we push for more programs like this?

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    1. BRYCS has highlighted a number of programs for newcomer youth that you may find interesting if developing your own: http://www.brycs.org/promisingPractices/index.cfm if you know of one you'd like to share, there's a submission form as well!

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    2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    3. We use photography class as therapeutic tool and as an outlet for emotional expression.

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  3. What are some recommendations for how to ask a student who is "misbehaving" what is going on when there are language barriers?

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    1. Look for a qualified interpreter.

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  4. THE IMMIGRANT YOUTH OR CHILDREN MOSTLY DO NOT PARTICIPATE IN MANY SCHOOL EVENTS, IS THERE ANY SPECIFIC REASON FOR THIS?

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    1. To my understanding there is no specific reason the youth immigrant don't participate in events, however they need time to adjust and becoming comfortable in joining events.

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    2. There are a number of reasons we have seen why refugee youth do not participate -- lack of communication or understanding, transportation difficulties, many teens are also responsible for caring for younger siblings and the household, and are not as free to take part in extracurricular events outside of school obligations.

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    3. Also, parents may not understand the purpose of the event and with everything so new, would rather have their child home safe where they can watch them.

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  5. I am a mental health therapist in a school setting. Have you done new-arrival transition groups? Or trauma-focused groups? If so, do you have any suggestions/recommendations?

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    1. I am currently running a Tree of Life and a Team of Life group.

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  6. I would be curious as to what literature regarding trauma informed narrative therapy with refugees would be recommended.

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    1. Kamya, H. (2008). Healing from Refugee Trauma: The Significance of Spiritual Beliefs, Faith Community, and Faith-based Services. In  Froma Walsh (Ed.). Spiritual resources in family therapy (286-300). 2rd edition.  New York: Guilford Press. 

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  7. Trauma Informed Care training as well as introducing culture and acculturation to teachers and school/district staff is crucial!

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  8. I would like to know how to educate our school partners when our clients go to many schools spread over 4 districts. Therefore, you may have just 2 refugees per school.

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  9. Can you offer more specific examples of "This is what happened, this is what was done, this worked/didn't work" -- and I also appreciate specific-to-country/situation examples, not so broad and general...

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  10. Important topic! Especially for those kids who ARRIVE here as teens; the kids who arrive here as toddlers or young elementary students usually become pretty well-adapted teens, but often still have issues. The ones who arrive AS teens really struggle because of their age and all the complications of adolescence on top of their other troubling background histories.

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