Being exposed to violence in the home during war increases children’s risk of developing problems in mental health and psychosocial wellbeing (MHPSW), a small but robust evidence base shows. Conversely, this evidence shows that supportive parenting can be a protective factor against the demonstrated negative effects of war on children’s MHPSW. Evidence from multiple sources increasingly shows that exposure to war alone cannot account for how children exposed to similar war events experience different mental and psychosocial states and trajectories. Other factors, including home life, provide complementary, at times even better, explanations for children’s MHPSW. In fact, in many cases, factors that traumatise children stem not only from war events, but also from everyday hardships. Home life can be a moderator, and potentially a mediator, of the effects of war
K4D helpdesk reports provide summaries of current research, evidence and lessons learned. This report was commissioned by the UK Department for International Development
Combaz, E. (2018) Effects of Violence in the Home on Children’s Mental Health and Psychosocial Wellbeing During Conflict. K4D Helpdesk Report. Brighton, UK: Institute of Development Studies.