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Emergency mental health and psychosocial support for survivors of post-election violence in Eldoret, Kenya

L Atwoli


Objective: To describe the design and delivery of emergency mental health and psychosocial support services for the survivors of Post-Election Violence in Eldoret, Kenya.
Design: A longitudinal intervention.
Setting: The North Rift Valley region in western Kenya.
Subjects: A total of 80,772 survivors received mental health and psychosocial support services.
Results: Counselling and Psychological First Aid services were successfully offered to most survivors in the North Rift Valley region. Common issues addressed included looking for lost relatives, sudden traumatic death of relatives, anger at their attackers, feelings of revenge, fear of seeing the corpse, loss of all property and source of livelihood and denial.
Conclusion: It is possible and necessary to integrate a mental health and psychosocial support intervention into a disaster response even in limited resource settings. Further studies are recommended to evaluate the effectiveness of this approach.
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eISSN: 0012-835X