Child Well-Being and Hope: A Qualitative Analysis of Focus Group Data From Ugandan Staff Members
Definitions of child well-being that are both culturally relevant and specific are vital to the understanding and treatment of traumatized children around the world. Organizations that aim to serve such populations must utilize culturally specific definitions to inform programming so that their efforts will be effective. The purpose of this study is to develop such a definition of child well-being in Northern Uganda. This qualitative study examined specific definitions of child well-being and hope reported by Ugandan staff members working with children and partnering with an international nongovernmental organization. Emergent coding techniques revealed 2 major themes associated with child well-being, with 8 related sub-themes, and 2 major themes associated with hope, with 6 related sub-themes. Using content analysis to analyze focus group transcripts, findings suggested that staff members spoke most often about a child's well-being as seen in his or her orientation to role, with attentiveness to teachers, growth/leadership, culturally appropriate respect, and care for peers as examples. Staff members also spoke frequently about hope as seen in a child's access to resources, specifically relational, educational, or religious resources. Implications include providing information for programs working with children in Northern Uganda following the devastation created by years of war.
Doctor of Philosophy in Clinical Psychology (PhD)
Eriksson, Cynthia B.
Child welfare, Social work with children, International relief, Uganda