Group 10: Case study Global Class Room Session 5.
From the questions in Case Study 2 we can identify:
Some psychosocial factors that might affect Susan are:
1. The effects from the abduction, such as fear and sadness.
2. The separation from her family.
3. Torture by the rebels.
4. Traumatic events during her time with the rebels. Such as watching friends die, peers getting murdered by rebels or killed by their own friends under the pressure of the rebels.
5. Rape.
6. Forced to married.
7. Pregnant and having a baby at a young age.
8. Being in the middle of battle.

These factors could cause her to experience Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

2. Considering these conditions, the Plan of action should be divided in several steps, namely:

1. Make sure Susan and her baby are save and protected.

2. Give Susan and her baby access to healthcare.

3. Help Susan to recover from her traumatic experiences with the help of a psychologist or a counselor. We could also use other techniques to help Susan with her trauma, for instance music and drama therapy and sports activities.

4. Find out whether Susan is able to continue caring for her baby or if she considers her baby as a burden. Often rape victims find it hard to take care of a child born from the rape. The baby might remind them too much of the traumatic event they have faced. If Susan considers the care of her baby as problematic and if she is not prepared to take care of the baby, we could give her other options. For instance to give her baby to other parents as adoption. The best interest of the baby and of Susan should be leading in this decision. This is also important because Susan is still a teenager, so maybe she isn’t ready to become a single parent. If Susan has negative feelings towards her baby, these feelings could make the recovery process more difficult; it will be harder for Susan to move on.

5. Susan has expressed the wish ‘to go home’. It will be important to define what Susan means by the term ‘home’. So we will have to ask Susan what she means with ‘home’. The importance of the definition of ‘home’ is mostly related to defining the Plan of Action in terms of social reintegration and rehabilitation.

6. If Susan defines ‘home’ as the place before she was abducted, we will execute Plan A. Plan A exists of several steps. Namely:
  • Find her relatives and families (Identification of Susan, Documentation, Tracing of Susan’s family, Verification
  • Prepare her and her relatives or family for the reunification. The preparation of both Susan and the family is vital for the reunification in order to enlarge the chances of mutual acceptation.
  • Prepare the community and anticipate if there is a risk of Susan being stigmatized, being rejected or whether for instance the community will consider the presence of a baby a scandal. Use key figures of the community to prepare the community and let the key figures be leading in a community sensitization program.
  • Depending on the geographical location of this case, and the cultural norms and values of the community: execute a cleansing ritual or other traditional ceremony in order for the community to consider Susan and het baby cleaned of all negativity.
  • Reunification of the family and Susan. But also reunification of the community and Susan.
  • Strengthen her family economically and in life quality. This could be done through livelihood programming and economic strengthening programming.
  • Give Susan education and access to the development of life skills, technical skills, literacy and numeracy classes.
  • Evaluating and monitoring Susans condition on a regular basis (maybe more often during the first years).


7. If Susan defines home as a new place where she will be able to start all over again, we will execute Plan B. Susan will have to leave everything behind and continue her life. In order to do so, there are several steps that have to be taken:

  • Find Susan a save and stable place to live. It will be important to find a community that will receive Susan and will support her. In order to define a safe community, where Susan will not be rejected or stigmatized, a community assessment will find place. We will have to collect knowledge on the cultural norms and values of the community in order to make an assessment of the risks of letting Susan live in the community. Use key figures of the community to prepare the community and let the key figures be leading in a community sensitization program.
  • Depending on the geographical location of this case, and the cultural norms and values of the community: execute a cleansing ritual or other traditional ceremony in order for the community to consider Susan and het baby cleaned of all negativity.
  • Strengthen her economic situation and her life quality (For example through livelihood programming and economic strengthening programming).
  • Provide Susan with education and the development of life skills and technical skills in order for her to be able to provide for her own income. Important is that Susan will be able to live independently, and in not going to be dependent of others.
  • Evaluating and monitoring Susans condition on a regular basis.


3. There are several possible problems of these Plans of Action (both Plan A and Plan B):

  • The risk of stigmatization and rejection from family or community.
  • Susan could be suffering from PTSD or other psychological problems. These psychological problems might influence the way she proceeds with her life.
  • It is possible that Susan considers her baby to be a burden or even hostile, because her baby is a part of a very traumatic event. These feelings of the mother can often be found in rape cases that cause pregnancy.
  • The risk that the family or the community consider the pregnancy and the baby of Susan a scandal. The family or the community may be able to accept Susan, but might reject the baby.


4. To alleviate these problems, we could:

  • Provide psycho education for Susan’s family and community about the effects of abduction, battle and other traumatic events on Susan. Explain to the family and community that support from them is very important for her recovery. An important part will also be the community sensitization program as mentioned before. Another option is to execute cleansing rituals or other traditional ceremonies. Hopefully Susan’s family and community understand Susan’s condition and will be able to accept her.
  • Give Susan counseling and therapy if necessary to help her overcome her PTSD and psychological problems. Also use different sorts of therapy to help Susan learn to cope with her history. For instance music and drama therapy and sports activities.
  • Give Susan training in life skills and technical skills. Also give her education (literacy and numeracy classes), so she will be able to move on with her life and be independent. In order for Susan to earn her own income and not be dependent of others.
  • Provide psycho education to the family about Susan’s baby. If the family and Susan don’t want to take care of the baby, it might be a possibility to give the baby to other parents as adoption.
  • Evaluating and monitoring Susan and baby condition very carefully on a regular basis.