Original Research

Post-traumatic stress disorder amongst children aged 8–18 affected by the 2011 northern-Namibia floods

Simon Taukeni, George Chitiyo, Morgan Chitiyo, Ina Asino, Genesia Shipena
Jàmbá: Journal of Disaster Risk Studies | Vol 8, No 2 | a169 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/jamba.v8i2.169 | © 2016 Simon Taukeni, George Chitiyo, Morgan Chitiyo, Ina Asino, Genesia Shipena | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 24 February 2015 | Published: 13 January 2016

About the author(s)

Simon Taukeni, School of Health Sciences, University of Fort Hare, South Africa
George Chitiyo, College of Education, Tennessee Technological University, United States
Morgan Chitiyo, Department of Counseling, Psychology and Special Education, Duquesne University, United States
Ina Asino, Office of Career Development, University of Namibia, Namibia
Genesia Shipena, Office of Student Affairs, University of Namibia, Namibia


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Abstract

Extreme flooding in the northern parts of Namibia occurred in 2011, impacting many schoolgoing children in the region. The rationale for the current research is to assess post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) on school children as a result of the floods. A self-administered Child Trauma Screening Questionnaire (CTSQ) with closed-ended questions was administered to 480 children between the ages of eight and 18 years at their respective schools. The CTSQ consists of five items assessing re-experiencing and five items assessing hyper-arousal symptoms. The results show that 55.2% of learners aged 12 and below and 72.8% of learners aged 13 and above reported experiencing symptoms of trauma from the floods 2 years after the event. These percentages were quite high and are therefore a cause for concern. Given the magnitude of this problem, it is important for the government and other stakeholders to provide the necessary psychological and/or emotional support in the event of future floods or similar disasters.

Keywords

Namibia flooding 2011; Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder; Child Trauma Screening; school children

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