A Culturally Informed Trauma Therapy Approach for Muslim Refugee Families

Author/s: Emel Genç

DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.37898/spiritualpc.1113571 

Year: 2022 Vol: 7 Number: 2


Refugees arriving in western countries from predominantly Muslim countries, who have already been exposed to severe traumatic experiences in their country of origin, experience further stress during the resettlement process in the host country. Although the number of Muslim refugees is increasing in the U.S. and Europe, the existing literature is not yet adequate to determine which treatments are effective for traumatized Muslim refugee families. Since inappropriate treatment approaches for this population may result cause ineffective or even negative therapy outcomes, this study aimed to develop a culturally responsive treatment model. Specifically, it offers an integrated family-based therapy approach for refugee families, which is influenced by narrative, art, and narrative exposure approaches. This integrated family therapy model consists of 12 weekly sessions in four phases: a) diagnostic interview; b) narration of the life story; c) exposure to the trauma; and d) re-narration and reprocessing of the traumatic events. Future studies should test the feasibility and effectiveness of this integrated model with randomized controlled trials as the implementation of such treatment models is essential for developing a culturally sensitive treatment model for Muslim refugees.

family therapy • Muslim refugees • narrative exposure therapy • refugee trauma • trauma treatment.

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