What is it about?

Indigenous mental health workers at the Thai-Myanmar border are confined to camps, where they serve their own community of fellow refugees who have fled war and persecution in Myanmar. This study indicates that even in a traumatic and highly stressful environment, mental health workers are capable of maintaining resilience by finding meaning in their work, and coping through teamwork and sharing.

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Why is it important?

Indigenous mental health workers are able to maintain resilience in a traumatic and highly stressful environment, over extended periods of time. Self-care and continued-education are examples of active coping strategies which promote resilience, and more could be done to support mental health workers in this. This is also significant as ‘how we can strengthen the MHPSS workforce’ has been identified by a wide variety of stakeholders as the top research priority in humanitarian global health going forward.


It was humbling to see the dedication and care that these mental health workers bring to their community, and in such difficult circumstances. It was also inspiring to see the impact they are able to have on people’s lives.

Edward Blakeney
Middlesex University

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Experiences of trauma, stress, and resilience in indigenous mental health workers operating among refugee and conflict-affected populations on the Thai–Myanmar border: A descriptive phenomenological analysis., The Humanistic Psychologist, March 2024, American Psychological Association (APA),
DOI: 10.1037/hum0000356.
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