Capoeira Angola: An alternative intervention program for traumatized adolescent refugees from war-torn countries
Background: Following resettlement in Australia, young traumatized refugees often face social challenges, including language and cultural barriers and social adjustment, which can lead to behavioral difficulties. Providing support at this vulnerable stage is therefore vital for reducing future setbacks.Objective: The STARTTS Capoeira Angola program was developed to help traumatized adolescents successfully integrate into their school environments. As an Afro-Brazilian martial art that incorporates dance, Capoeira appeared an appropriate intervention for adolescent refugees due to its unique ethos of empowerment and group membership. Method: 32 refugeesfrom Middle Eastern and African countries (aged12-17) from the Intensive English Centre (IEC) department of the participant schools were assessed pre- and post- intervention using the Teacher’s Strengths and Difficulties Scale (SDQ). Teachers were also asked to observe the students’ functioning in a range of different situations at school. Results/conclusions: A significant overall decrease in behavioral problems was observed, which was associated with improvements in interpersonal skills, confidence, respect for self and others, self-discipline, and overall sense of responsibility.
Alsaleh, T. (2013). Palestinian children learn capoeira in refugee camps. BBC news report, Bidna Capoeira's work in Palestine as part of World Refugee Day, June. Sport and Development Organization, SAD Public.
Aroche, J., Coello, M. & Momartin, S. (2012a). Culture, Family & Social Networks: Ethno-cultural influences on recovery, reconnection and resettlement of refugee families. Volume 3, Chapter 10; In: Segal, U. & Elliot, D. (Eds). Refugees Worldwid. Praeger Publishers Inc.; July 2012, Santa Barbara, CA.
Aroche, J., Coello, M. & Momartin, S. (2012b). The search for solutions: Programs, services & interventions to facilitate resettlement and assist refugee families. Volume 4, Chapter 6; In: Segal, U. & Elliot, D. (EdS). Refugees Worldwide. Praeger Publishers Inc.; July 2012, Santa Barbara, CA.
Aroche, J. & Coello, M. (1994). “Toward a systemic approach for the treatment and rehabilitation of torture and trauma survivors in exile: the experience of STARTTS in Australia”, Paper presented at the 4th International Conference of Centres, Institutions and Individuals Concerned with Victims of Organised Violence: “Caring for and Empowering Victims of Human rights Violations”, Tagaytay City, Philippines, December 5-9, 1994.
Assunçao, Mathias R. (2005). Capoeira: The History of an Afro-Brazilian Martial Art. London: Routledge.
Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC). (2012). Face the Facts: Indigenous people, migrants and refugees and asylum seekers. AHRC Newsletter.
Becker, A., Woerner, W., Hasselhorn, M.,Banaschewski, T. & Rothenberger, A. (2004). Validation of the parent and teacher SDQ in a clinical sample. European Child and Adolescent. Psychiatry, 13(Suppl. 2), II11–16. DOI: 10.1007/s00787-004-2003-5
Birman, D. & Chan, W.Y. (2008). Screening and Assessing Immigrant and Refugee Youth in School-Based Mental Health Programs. Center for Health and Healthcare in Schools. https://www.rwjf.org/en/library/research/2008/05/screening-and-assessing-immigrant-and-refugee-youth-in-school-ba.html
Boneco, M. (2002). Foundations of Capoeira. Retrieved from http://www.capoeirabrasil.com
Burt, I. & Kent Butler, S. (2011). Capoeira as a Clinical Intervention: Addressing Adolescent Aggression with Brazilian Martial Arts. Journal of Multicultural Counselling and Development. Volume 39, issue 1, pages: 48–57. |https://doi.org/10.1002/j.2161-1912.2011.tb00139.x
Capoeira, Nestor (2002). Capoeira: Roots of the Dance – Fight – Game. Berkeley: North Atlantic Books.
Capoeira, N. (2003). The little Capoeira book. Berkeley, CA: North Atlantic.
Capoeira, N. (2006). A street-smart song: Capoeira philosophy and inner life. Berkeley, CA: North Atlantic.
Delamont, S. & Stephens, N. (2007). Excruciating Elegance: Representing the Embodied Habitus of Capoeira Dr Sara Delamont, Cardiff University. Working paper. School of Social Sciences, Cardiff University
Dunphy, K., Mullane, S. & Guthrie, J. (2015). Dance movement therapy as a specialized form of counseling and psychotherapy in Australia: the emergence of theory and practice. In C. Noble & E. Day. (Eds.) Psychotherapy and Counseling: Reflections on Practice. (pp. 173-189), London: Oxford University Press.
Fazel, M. & Stein, A. (2002). The mental health of refugee children. Archives of Disease in Childhood; 87(5):366-70. http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/adc.87.5.366
Fernandes, P., & Aiello, Y. (2018). Breaking the silence through MANTRA: Empowering Tamil MAN survivors of torture and rape. Torture Journal, 28(3), 14-29.
Ford, T, Hutchings, J, Bywater, T, Goodman, A, Goodman, R (2009). Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire Added Value Scores: evaluating effectiveness in child mental health interventions. British Journal of Psychiatry, 194, 552-8. doi: 10.1192/bjp.bp.108.052373
Glick, B. & Goldstein, A. P. (1987). Aggression replacement training. Journal of Counselling and Development, Volume 65 (7), 356-362. |https://doi.org/10.1002/j.1556-6676.1987.tb00730.x
Goodman, R. (2001). ‘Psychometric properties of the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ)’, Journal of the Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 40: 1337-1345. DOI: 10.1097/00004583-200111000-00015
Gray, A. E. L. (2001). The Body Remembers: Dance/Movement Therapy with an Adult Survivor of Torture. American Journal of Dance Therapy, 23(1), 29-43. https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1010780306585
Hayes, S. C., Strosahl, K. D., & Wilson, K. G. (1999). Acceptance and commitment therapy: An experiential approach to behavior change. New York: Guilford Press.
Hedegard, D. (2012). Becoming a Capoeirista: A situational approach to interpreting a foreign cultural good. Sociological Inquiry. Vol.82(4), pp. 1078-1095. |https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1475-682X.2012.00415.x
Herman, J. L. (1997). Trauma and Recovery: The aftermath of violence from domestic abuse to political terror. Basic Books, New York.
Joseph, J. (2012). The practice of Capoeira: Diasporic Black culture in Canada. Ethnic and Racial Studies. Vol.35(6), June, pp. 1078-1095. https://doi.org/10.1080/01419870.2012.661866
Karlsen, E. (2011). Refugee Resettlement to Australia. : What are the facts? Law and Bills Digest Section. December. https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/rp/rp1617/RefugeeResettlement
Lewis, F. M. & Daltroy, L. H. (1990). "How Causal Explanations Influence Health Behavior: Attribution Theory." In Glanz, K., Lewis, F.M. and Rimer, B.K. (eds.) Health Education and Health Behavior: Theory , Research. and Practice. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass Publishers, Inc
Lossing, A., Moore, & Zuhl, M. (2017). Dance as a treatment for neurological disorders. Body, Movement and Dance in Psychotherapy. 12:3, 170-184. https://doi.org/10.1080/17432979.2016.1260055
Miller, J., Mitchell, J., Brown, J. (2005). African refugees with interrupted schooling in the high school mainstream: Dilemmas for teachers. Prospect Vol. 20, No. 2. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s13384-012-0082-8
Mollica, R. F., Poole, C., Son, L., Murray, C. & Svang, T. (1997). Effects of war trauma of Cambodian refugee adolescent’s functional health and mental health status. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Vol 36(8). 1098-1106. doi:10.1097/00004583-199708000-00017
Momartin, S., da Silva Miranda, E., Aroche, J. & Coello, M. (2018). Resilience Building through Alternative Intervention: ‘STARTTS ‘Project Bantu Capoeira Angola’; On the Road to Recovery, Intervention: Journal of Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Conflict Affected Area. July, Volume 16 (2), 154-160. DOI: 10.4103/INTV.INTV_6_18
Nosanchuk, T. A. (1981). The way of the warrior: The effects of traditional martial arts training on aggressiveness. Human Relations, 34, 435-444. https://doi.org/10.1177/001872678103400601
Reynolds, D. & Reasons, M. (2012). Kinesthetic Empathy in Creative and Cultural Practices, The University of Chicago Press Books; Bristol Intellect.
Schmitt, C. (2016). Ahead of Rio 2016, capoeira brings a taste of Brazil to DRC. UNHCR Report.
Sixsmith, R. (2010). At a glance: Syrian Arab Republic: Capoeira brings joy to displaced Iraqi children at the Al-Tanf refugee camp in Syria. UNICEF Report March.
Twemlow, S. W., Biggs, B. K., Nelson, T. D., Vernberg, E. M., & Fonagy, P. (2008). Effects of participation in a martial arts-based antibullying program in elementary schools. Psychology in the Schools, 45, 947-959. DOI: 10.1002/pits.20344
Twemlow, S.W., Sacco, F.C., & Fonagy, P. (2008). Embodying the mind: Movement as a container for destructive aggression. American Journal of Psychotherapy, 62(1), 1-33. DOI: 10.1176/appi.psychotherapy.2008.62.1.1
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, UNHCR Global Trends (2017). “Forced Displacement in 2016”. Annual Report.
Verreault, K. (2017). Dance/Movement therapy and resilience building with female asylum seekers and refugees: a phenomenological practice based research. Intervention. 15(2):120-135. DOI:10.1097/WTF.0000000000000150
Authors will be asked to sign a transfer of copyright agreement, which recognises the common interest that both journal and author(s) have in the protection of copyright. We accept that some authors (e.g. government employees in some countries) are unable to transfer copyright. The copyright covers both the Torture Journal and the IRCT web site. The publisher will not put any limitation on the personal freedom of the author to use material contained in the paper in other works which may be published, provided that acknowledgement is made to the original place of publication.