Southern African Journal of Social Work and Social Development <p><strong>Hybrid Open Access</strong></p> <p><em>Southern African Journal of Social Work and Social Development, </em>formerly<em> The Social Work Practitioner-Researcher,</em> is a refereed interdisciplinary journal for social workers and social service professionals concerned with the advancement of the theory and practice of social work and social development in Africa and in a changing global world. </p> en-US (Adrian van Breda) (Lucky Madikiza) Tue, 20 Feb 2024 07:30:39 +0000 OJS 60 Drivers of Learner Aggression in Selected Schools in the Amathole District Municipality in South Africa <p class="Abstract"><span lang="EN-GB">In the pursuit of an environment conducive to effective teaching and learning, schools are universally regarded as sanctuaries of nonviolence for all stakeholders. However, the South African education landscape has witnessed a distressing trend as schools have increasingly transformed into arenas of criminal activity and violence. Against this background, the present study sought to explore the drivers of learner aggression in selected schools situated in the Amathole District Municipality. The study followed a phenomenological research design that enabled the researchers to explore the lived experiences of the participants and unearth insights into learner aggression. Using a purposive sampling technique, twenty-five participants were purposively selected from five separate schools and data were collected using semi-structured interviews. The findings reveal that the overarching influence of violent communities and dysfunctional family structures and teacher favouritism, particularly directed towards academically proficient students, were drivers of aggressive behaviour. Among others, the study recommends the urgent need for teacher training programmes that focus on dealing with learner aggression. By equipping teachers with enhanced tools to discern, prevent, and effectively respond to instances of learner aggression, the education system can foster an atmosphere of safety and inclusivity.</span></p> Eleanor Alvira Hendricks, Bonginkosi Hardy Mutongoza Copyright (c) 2024 Unisa Press Tue, 20 Feb 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Combination Social Protection Programme as an HIV Prevention Mechanism: Experiences of Youths in Resource-Constrained Settings of Gauteng Province, South Africa <p class="Abstract"><span lang="EN-GB">Regardless of the tremendous growth of combination social protection as a human immunodeficiency virus prevention mechanism in South Africa, little is known about the ways in which combination social protection improves prevention outcomes for youths. In this article, we report on the experiences of youths participating in the combination social protection. In the study, which was conducted among Black African youths in the City of Johannesburg township settings of Soweto, Alexandra, and Orange Farm, we adopted a qualitative approach. The aim of the study was to explore the experiences of youths participating in the combination social protection and their views on how the programme changed their risk behaviour and sexual practices. We used a purposively selected sample to identify participants for semi-structured qualitative interviews. In-depth individual interviews were conducted with thirty youths and focus group discussions with six non-governmental organisations practitioners and five Department of Social Development officials. The data were analysed by implementing Creswell and Creswell’s strategy of qualitative thematic analysis. The findings show that when youths are equipped with prevention informational resources, economic capabilities, and social assets, they are empowered with agency and purposefulness that may alter their intentions to engage in risky sexual behaviour. It is also revealed that, by providing space for youths to engage on issues of gender and differential access to health and economic opportunities, the programme advanced the empowerment of female youths. Thus, combination social protection could be part of the country’s comprehensive social work package for empowering youths in poor localities.</span></p> Enock Zibengwa, Pius Tangwe Tanga Copyright (c) 2024 Unisa Press Tue, 20 Feb 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Ethical Challenges of Medical Social Workers During the COVID-19 Pandemic Lockdown in Yenagoa City, Bayelsa State, Nigeria <p class="Abstract"><span class="fontstyle01"><span lang="EN-GB" style="font-size: 9.0pt;">The COVID-19 pandemic increased healthcare workers' chances of exposure to medical hazards. This study investigates the ethical challenges of medical social workers during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown in Yenagoa City, Bayelsa state, Nigeria. Using the Ideological Dilemma model as a theoretical framework, t</span></span><span lang="EN-GB">his qualitative study, through a snowball sampling method, employed an in-depth interview to study 25 medical social workers recruited from three medical establishments in Yenagoa city. The collected data for this study were analysed thematically using content analysis with the aid of ATLAS.ti software. Findings from the study indicated that medical social workers experienced ethical challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic in Yenagoa City. These challenges included creating and maintaining trust with patients, deciding to follow or ignore policies in the face of emergencies, prioritising patients’ needs despite the risks, and managing the workload alongside personal and emotional needs. Medical social workers generally experience fatigue and challenges handling persistent patients and their family members. The study recommended that the government partner with the state healthcare sector and introduce technology that may enable workers and their patients to communicate privately.</span></p> Endurance Uzobo, Grace A.T Scent, Mezewo E. Obuzor Copyright (c) 2024 Unisa Press Tue, 05 Mar 2024 00:00:00 +0000 The Contribution of the Agricultural Food Security Pack Programme to Beneficiary Households in Zambia: A Case Study of Mpulungu District <p>Small-scale farming provides most of the food produced in Southern Africa. Unfortunately, most vulnerable-but-viable small-scale farmers in Zambia are affected by household food insecurity despite the Zambian government providing them with farming inputs under the food security pack programme. This study investigated the effects of the programme on maize crop production among 147 vulnerable-but-viable farming households in Mpulungu District, using a mixed-methods approach. The study results revealed improved land cultivation, maize crop productivity and access to food by family members after respondents entered the programme. These results imply that the programme contributed positively to the achievement of the aforementioned positive successes, despite the beneficiaries receiving farming inputs late, i.e., outside the planting period. Notwithstanding the many positive effects achieved by the programme, there were some challenges, namely, the late receipt of farming inputs by most beneficiaries, failure by the Zambian government to release timely funds to suppliers of farming inputs, imposition of some male beneficiaries into the programme by politicians, and low literacy levels among most beneficiaries. The study concludes that despite the challenges encountered in the programme implementation, the food security pack programme had positive effects on maize crop production among most of the benefiting vulnerable-but-viable small-scale farmers in Mpulungu District. Therefore, the study recommends scaling up the programme and increasing the number of programme beneficiaries, timely distribution of inputs and budget profiling by the Ministry of Community Development and Social Services — a lead ministry for implementing the programme.</p> Royd Tembo Copyright (c) 2024 Unisa Press Tue, 20 Feb 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Psychosocial Experiences of LGBTQIA+ Youth Experiencing Homelessness in Cape Town, South Africa <p class="Abstract">Social science literature demonstrates consistent trends of socioeconomic disadvantage and complex psychosocial problems for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, plus (LGBTQIA+) people globally. This is particularly salient in the area of homelessness among LGBTQIA+ youth in the literature from the Global North. This study sought to document and analyse the psychosocial experiences of LGBTQIA+ youth (aged 18 to 34) in Cape Town, South Africa. Through a mixed methods approach, using the theoretical frameworks of intersectionality, minority stress theory, and minority strengths theory, researchers examined semi-structured interview and survey data from 12 residents at an emergency shelter service organisation for LGBTQIA+ individuals experiencing homelessness in Cape Town. Findings indicate that residents in the shelter reported heightened levels of depression and experiences of discrimination. Several major themes emerged from interview transcript analysis, such as the role of culture, toxic masculinity, religion, substance use, and mental health concerns. Recommendations are that social workers continue to follow-up with residents once they have left the shelter to ensure that the interventions are successful and that programmes designed for the population should incorporate an understanding of these psychosocial aspects of LGBTQIA+ homelessness in South Africa.</p> Maurice Gattis, Neil Henderson, Aaron Kemmerer, Johan Fourie Copyright (c) 2024 Unisa Press Tue, 20 Feb 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Impact of Youth Empowerment Programmes in Low-Income Settings: A Systematic Review of the Qualitative Evidence <p class="Abstract"><span lang="EN-GB">The impact and sustainability of youth empowerment programmes is highly contentious in a context marked by significant levels of poverty, unemployment and inequality. Youth empowerment programmes play a role in supporting low-income youth. This article presents a systematic review of six studies that were conducted between 2008 and 2013 in poor, urban, semi-rural and rural communities in South Africa. The main goal of the article is to describe how young people have been impacted by participating in youth empowerment programmes in their communities. Themes on key development indicators, results-based transformation, and sustainable youth empowerment programmes, summarise the main factors that influence how youth empowerment programmes are perceived. The systematic review of the literature results provides a basis for further research into youth empowerment programmes. </span></p> Madoda Sitshange Copyright (c) 2024 Unisa Press Tue, 27 Feb 2024 00:00:00 +0000