Psychotherapy to address homelessness?
Dr. McGuire of the University of Southhampton recently indicated that the majority of people in the homelessness community lack the psychological and practical skills necessary to live independently and hold down¬†work or an occupation in the long term.¬† Frequently they turn to drugs and alcohol to cope with their difficulties as well as struggles with their emotions. People who find themselves homeless again and again are suffering from severe psychological problems that need to be addressed with Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) techniques. Her research¬†also indicated that to¬†equip them (homeless) with practical skills, such as finding a place to live, advice on claiming benefits and getting a job are crucial and need to be addressed as these individuals are alone and without assistance.¬†There are currently no services on offer to help them develop emotional and psychological skills, build self-esteem or set meaningful life goals.¬† This means that they never get to sort out the complex emotional and psychological problems which lie behind their homelessness.
Funding has been¬†made available, in the UK, to provide treatments such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), which influence the way individuals think about themselves in the world and can positively affect beliefs and actions.¬†In addition, it was determined that specialized homelessness teams should be trained in the relevant psychological therapies to help these individuals who are suffering.
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