Couple counselling for ethnic minority clients living with domestic violence
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The purpose of the practicum was to acquire advanced clinical skills to work with ethnic minority couples, who experienced domestic violence, either as a victim or perpetrator. Additionally, the student's objective was to understand the structural and ecological model of therapy as well as apply cross cultural approaches and techniques useful for assisting such clientele. The research conducted on immigrant women victims of domestic violence indicated that even though they felt helpless, powerless, and overwhelmed with a sense of loss, in regards to their self-worth, respect and privacy, they would not choose to phone the police due to a fear of breaking the family unity. The research also indicated that these women being victims of domestic violence would like their partners to stop abusing them and to get counselling. This may not be easy due to linguistic and cultural barriers. This practicum provided the student with the opportunity to review the literature, to develop knowledge of effective helping interventions, and to develop culturally sensitive treatment approaches that address the needs of ethnic minority couples. The practicum also provided an opportunity to enhance the writer's clinical skills and to complete the requirement for clinical practice. The evaluation instruments used to assess changes were the Index of Marital Adjustment and Dyadic Adjustment Scale used as pre and post-tests.