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Nyanungo (2005) defines Community Psychology as a field in psychology that focuses on prevention rather than cure. It emphasizes the creation of alternatives through identifying and developing the resources and strengths of the community focusing on actions directed toward the competencies of the people; Neitzel, Bernstein and Milich (1991:18). Community psychology‟s goal is to minimize or prevent psychological disorders, not just treat them; Wood and deGlanville (1997). These efforts began with community health programs designed to make traditional treatment methods more accessible to the poor and others who are unseen or undeserved by mental health professionals; Neitzel, Bernstein and Milich (1991:18). Later, community psychology broadened its perspective to include efforts at preventing psychological disorders by altering the conditions that cause or aggravate them. There are many alternative approaches to community psychology, for example the ones by Bloom-Heller, Bronfenbrenner and the Public Health one. This essay is going to examine the three categories of prevention activities as proposed by Caplan (1964) and explain their significance to community psychology. The three categories of prevention according to Caplan (1964) are primary prevention, secondary prevention and tertiary prevention. According to Orford (1993:155), Primary prevention seeks to reduce incidence by preventing new cases of the disorder from developing. Focus in primary prevention is on people who are completely free of the disorder at the time, those at mild risk and those at particularly high risk. Partly due to definitional problems, Forgays suggested a triadic breakdown of primary prevention as a way of addressing the definitional problems; Lahey (1995:55). Primary prevention was then divided into Primary prevention 1 (for those completely free from the disorder), primary prevention 2 (for the part of the population that is at mild risk) and primary prevention 3 (for those at high risk). Secondary prevention aims at detecting the disorder early and to provide effective treatment at an early stage of the disorder. It

Community Psychology PSY304

The application of this model necessitates a degree of social change. We believe that behavior change is the most essential strategy in overcoming the HIV pandemic. BIIC AIDS project. Genetic counselling of young couples considering to have children can help them at reducing genetic linked disorders Community Psychology PSY304 . Orford (1993:155) further goes on to say that it cannot reduce incidence. just to name a few. Our experience as affected and infected individuals proves that the behavior change is possible. Part of their statement of beliefs reads as follows: “The pandemic affects everyone.2 has to do with the reduction of prevalence of a disorder. primary prevention as a whole has to do with the correcting of negative conditions before significant problems emerge as a consequence of these conditions. As mentioned earlier. youth festivals and poetry formation of Anti-AIDS clubs in schools. conducted trainers of trainers workshops for youths and enlisted the services of an NGO called Deseret International which is a firm believer of behavior change as the solution to HIV/AIDS. but if it successfully nips the progressive conditions in the bud. tertiary prevention has to do with the prevention of disabilities and handicaps which may be associated with a disorder. Chiremba and Kent (2003:83). Chiremba and Kent (2003:83). Tertiary prevention is premised on the idea that a disorder need not necessarily produce disability and that a disability need not necessarily result in handicap. In Primary prevention 1. The provision of bins by the City of Harare to almost every household is a good example and it assumes a form of social orientation. In February 2002. then its effect will be to shorten the duration of the disorder and hence the overall prevalence within the community. Mpofu.” Mpofu. In other words. intervention programmes are provided without necessarily identifying the group to be at risk. Yule as cited by Orford (1993:155). Some of their strategies they used in their prevention programmes were AIDS awareness campaigns.

Mpofu. Chiremba and Kent (2003:8). Prevention interventions must be collaborative & delivered in a way that avoids paternalistic style that characterizes some traditional therapistclient interventions. for example a squatter camp like Porta farm. Problems can occur if the foetus‟ positive blood manages to find way into the mother‟s negative blood either during pregnancy or during labour. in taking Community Psychology PSY304 . In this case. who were mostly not adequately educated on how to care for their teeth and most likely did not brush their teeth every day. The dental fluoridation of children in rural primary schools. an exercise that the author witnessed in 1994 was targeted at children of low socio-economic status. Lahey (1995:232). The issue of Rhesus negative blood mixing with Rhesus positive blood in pregnant mothers can also be averted by being tested though it is regarded as a very rare occurrence yet deadly when it does happen. Retirement training for the elderly who are about to retire from their jobs is another example of a milestone transition intervention program.3 such as Anemia and Fragile X. people participate by providing labour in exchange of building materials. According to Elias et al as cited by Orford the school transition program is a milestone intervention program aimed at helping pupils adjust from elementary or primary school to secondary school. Primary prevention 2 targets groups in the populace that are considered to be at mild risk. The participation of the community and its involvement in problem solving cannot be over emphasized in community psychology. they can help them build toilets through the „participation for material incentives‟ typology. However. the mother‟s blood may create antibodies to attack the rhesus negative blood in the „foreign body‟ that is the baby. is overpopulated and there aren‟t enough toilets. The Tonggat Sugar Company in Hippo Valley gives all its workers anti-malarial tablets prophylactically every Wednesday because the place is a malaria prone area. Rappaport and Seidman (2000). When authorities realize that a place.

Mpofu. Chiremba and Kent (2003) further state that it is targeted at people already showing signs of the disorder and the two conditions necessary for successful secondary prevention programmes are early. they could save the lives of thousands of children each year. If these interventions were used worldwide. Community Psychology PSY304 . water purification tablets and teaching people about the etiology and symptoms of cholera in Cholera awareness programs is an example of secondary prevention that took place here in Zimbabwe. The distribution of clean water storage containers. Primary prevention 3 deals with such groups. there is no suggestion that those who do not take them will necessarily suffer from malaria. victims of war and witnesses of genocides are all groups in society that are likely to develop serious mental health illnesses in their lives such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. This involves screening large numbers of people. Thus secondary prevention aims at preventing the continuation and worsening of the problem. Secondary prevention has to do with the detection and correcting of problems early. access to antiretroviral therapy. Women who have been raped. Mother or parent to child transmission of HIV/AIDS can virtually be eliminated by effective voluntary testing and counseling. including people who are not seeking help and those that do not appear to be at risk. safe delivery practices and the widespread availability and safe use of breast milk substitutes.4 anti-malarial tablets in this way. Mpofu. accurate diagnosis plus effective treatment. In the case of abuse. The Prevention of Parent to Child Transmission programme is an example of secondary prevention. Chiremba and Kent (2003:9). Some groups in our societies are identified as at great risk of developing serious mental disorders based on factors unique to those groups. Ford (2009). Pasquali et al (1989) says there is need for early identification of cases of abuse in the community and the prompt and effective treatment of the abusers and their victims.

Owen (2010). such as healthy attitudes toward sexuality. UNICEF recruited counsellors mostly from the Zimbabwe Open University to go door to door. the offender is required to acknowledge all his sexual offenses during therapy. working toward taking full responsibility. in partnership with the Ministry of Justice. plan for regaining trust from family members. reduce denial. It was aimed at female prisoners. recognizing impact of victimization on family members and friends. Other issues. The relapse prevention plan then takes each step of an offender's cycle and generates options. diversions and alternate behaviours that interrupt his offense path. In 2006 the Mexican Government came up with the Maria Marias Program which was created by SEJUS. Kaplinski (2011). vocational and cultural actions enabling them to rescue their citizenship and their productive value. While in the past. Owen (2010). whether they are known or unknown to people outside himself. The goals of therapy include identification of his chain and cycle of offending. rehabilitation may have been directed at 'reforming the character' of prisoners. substance abuse and anger management are also addressed. After the Cholera epidemic and the death of many people. counselling those who had been bereaved in areas where the outbreak took place. recognizing impact on victims and victim empathy. its focus is now on preventing reoffending. In the case of sexual offenders. with the purpose of reintegrating them into society through socio-educational. self management of deviant sexual arousal.5 Tertiary prevention seeks at reducing the duration and negative effects of the problems after they have occurred. the offender is expected to Community Psychology PSY304 . This prevention model often involves rehabilitation for example in prisoners. Usually. Judith (2011). and working toward implementing an effective relapse prevention plan. Most of the convicts carry complex psychosocial problems and need instruction for the outside world. The offender is expected to increase available coping skills for all activities. especially when stress or gratification needs are present.

Kaplinski further asserts that with community psychology we have been able to open up resources and lines of communication.6 remain in treatment for 12 to 18 months to successfully develop an effective. it is great that community psychology has been adapted. influence. individualized relapse prevention plan. For this sense of community it is important to have membership. integration and fulfillment of needs. and empowering the community. and a shaped emotional connection. Since Maslow's hierarchy of needs ranks needing to belong high. recognizing individual talents. Community Psychology PSY304 . joint efforts. Community psychology plays a very important role in today's world. The mix of these two helps to fill the desire and need to belong. With community psychology we can establish leadership using organization. The development of community psychology has helped to combine individualistic cultures with collectivistic cultures. Kaplinski (2011). which helps to show our pure altruism.

The CV Mosby Company publishers Rappaport. (2005) Psychology the public and other professions. Bernstein. and Seidman E. (1997) Community Health. African medical and research foundation. Nairobi. Date accessed: 03/05/2012 Community Psychology PSY304 . New York. London.uk/reference/prisonrehabilitation. (1989) Mental health nursing: A holistic approach. P. 5th Edition.. (2011) Careers in psychology. Harare. Prentice Hall Wood C. R.. deGlanville H. J.2nd Edition. D. (Online) http://www. A. http://www. B. Chiremba W and Kent D.M.7 Bibliography Lahey B.apa. Vaughan J. (1993) Community Psychology Theory and practice.com/ date accessed: 01/05/2012 Judith C. John Wiley and sons. M. (2003) Community Psychology..google.pdf.net/probingtheboundaries/wpcontent/uploads/2012/04/cabraleppape r. H.G.interdisciplinary. Date accessed: 03/05/2012 Kaplinski E. Pasquali E. (2009) Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: Scientific and professional Dimensions (Online) http://books. (2010) Prison Rehabilitation. Michigan. Zimbabwe Open University Neitzel M.org. (2000) Handbook of community psychology. Arnold H.politics.C ( 2011) Rehabilitation of prisoners. (1995) Psychology: An Introduction. (Online) www. Ford J. New Jersey.. R. New York. McGraw-Hill Company Mpofu W. and Milich R (1991) Introduction to clinical Psychology. L. Zimbabwe Open University Orford J. Harare. and De BaSio N. T. Date accessed: 01/05/2012 Owen R.co. Prentice Hall Nyanungo K.