Proposal: Counseling Immigrants and Refugees – Bring the World to your Backyard The primary objective of this is to educate about counseling immigrants and refugees in an entertaining and interactive way. We should specifically highlight assisting immigrant and refugee college students.
Learning objectives consist of:
1. Define what an immigrant and what a refugee status person is.
2. Identify unique characteristics (i.e. culture, socioeconomic status, etc.) of immigrants and refugees in the United States.
3. Discuss common issues of adjustment experienced by immigrants and refugees in the United States.
4. Identify/implement counseling strategies and needs best suited for immigrant and refugee clients/students.
5. Utilize best practices of counseling strategies from other colleges and universities when working with immigrant and refugee students.
Counseling Strategies/Techniques – – interpreters (transference, ingenuous connection, etc.) – allowing clients to name their experiences in their own time – Counselors need to understand different family dynamics an involvement
Specific Issues for International Students at Colleges and Universities: – best practices (offices, programs, events, mentors, etc) – a practice example of counseling within small groups __________________________________________________________________ [From our textbook]
Immigrants living in the US make up approx. 12% of the population – And about half of these 33.5 million people have arrived since 1990.
Reasons for migration include an escape from poverty, seeking a higher quality of life, and political unrest (in their native/home countries). Approx. ½ of those who have immigrated since 1965 come from Latin American countries, and another ¼ of this population from Asia, leaving the last ¼ a diverse group from places such as Canada, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.
Many earn lower wages and have a much higher incidence rate of poverty, esp. those originating from underdeveloped countries. Immigrants in the US adult population 33% have not completed their high school education (as compared to 12.5% of the total adult population).
Furthermore, immigrant students account for 10% of high school students, they account for 27% of high school drop outs – so they tend to quit school in greater numbers than students born in the US. Children of immigrant families have high rates of poverty (35%) and nearly half are uninsured.
Challenges Historical & Sociopolitical Factors Immigration Laws pre-1952 were biased Social Stigmas (perceived by White America) Prejudice & Discrimination English as the national language Immigrants=terrorists post 9/11 Climate of fear – led to decline in use of healthcare and other resources
Cultural & Acculturation Conflicts adjustment & adaptation to new cultural customs within a different society mixed reception received by US citizens less likely to see out assistance due to cultural norms Gender Issues & Domestic Violence employment opps greater for women, lead to men’s domestic violence towards their wives to “regain their authority & power” women socialized to sacrifice their needs for the needs of their spouse/family economic dependence & fear of retaliation = fear of reporting abuse
Barriers to Seeking Treatment Language barrier/communication difficulties
Lack of knowledge of mainstream service delivery
Cultural factors
Lack of resources – poor, no transportation, lack of time off work Linguistic & Communication Issues many immigrants require an interpreter adding a 3rd person to the counseling relationship changes/shifts the dynamic interpreters not trained in counseling – feelings of emotional distress or uncomfortable at client’s revelations of traumatic distress
Counseling Refugees Effects of Past Persecution, Torture, or Trauma Safety Issues & Coping with Loss
Topic Proposal: Counseling Immigrants Refugees – Bring World Backyard The primary objective educate counseling immigrants refugees entertaining interactive . We specifically highlight assisting immigrant refugee college students.

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