Helping victims of terrorism: What makes social work effective?

Haya Itzhaky, Rachel Dekel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study examined factors that contribute to effectiveness of social work for victims of terrorism, as reflected by a reduction of mental distress and promotion of personal growth in clients. Participants were 148 pairs of social workers and clients. Social workers completed questionnaires that assessed the intervention characteristics (micro-and macro-intervention effectiveness, supervision effectiveness, and level of directiveness in treatment), as well as personal resources (empowerment and exposure to terrorism). Clients completed mental distress and growth questionnaires. Micro-intervention effectiveness contributed toward explaining the variance in clients' mental distress, whereas effectiveness of the macrointervention and the directive nature of the approach contributed toward explaining the variance in clients' growth. Empowerment contributed toward distress and growth only when it interacted with one of the intervention characteristics. The social workers' personal exposure to terrorism directly influenced the reduction of clients' distress and promotion of personal growth.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)335-343
Number of pages9
JournalSocial Work
Volume50
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2005

Keywords

  • Distress
  • Effectiveness
  • Empowerment
  • Growth
  • Terrorism

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