Exploring Trauma-Related Social Work Practice in a Resource-Limited Context: Insights from Social Workers in the Waterberg District, South Africa





challenges, secondary trauma, social workers, trauma-informed services, trauma-informed perspective, trauma-related services, trauma-specific services


This qualitative study explored the challenges faced by social workers delivering trauma-related services (TRS) in the resource-limited Waterberg District, Limpopo, South Africa. Using a phenomenological design guided by the ecosystem and trauma-informed perspectives, semi-structured interviews were conducted with 15 experienced social workers. Data analysis followed Tesch’s eight steps, with data verification per Lincoln and Guba’s model. The findings highlighted the need for trauma-informed organisational structures and workforce support in the Waterberg District, advocating for integrating trauma-informed principles into policies and procedures to enhance professional effectiveness and capacity for service delivery to trauma victims. The findings further underscored the urgent necessity for improved training and education for social workers to tackle issues related to trauma adeptly.


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How to Cite

Erlank, Elca, and Rhulani Sherlock Bopape. 2024. “Exploring Trauma-Related Social Work Practice in a Resource-Limited Context: Insights from Social Workers in the Waterberg District, South Africa”. Southern African Journal of Social Work and Social Development 36 (2):20 pages. https://doi.org/10.25159/2708-9355/14574.



Received 2023-09-03
Accepted 2024-04-08
Published 2024-06-26