1 Universidad Miguel Hernández de Elche (SPAIN)
2 West of England University (UNITED KINGDOM)
3 University of Primorska (SLOVENIA)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2015 Proceedings
Publication year: 2015
Pages: 4590-4599
ISBN: 978-84-608-2657-6
ISSN: 2340-1095
Conference name: 8th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 18-20 November, 2015
Location: Seville, Spain
HOPE is a project that aims to develop training, supported by a wide range of materials, for new or existing vocational guidance counsellors who work with adult clients with a history of abuse. The project also aimed to highlight the importance of, and engage with, networks of practitioners from different fields, such as support organisations, the health sector, social services and the police. The reason why the focus of this project is vocational guidance is because, through research carried out by project partners, it has been found that the specific support required by victims of abuse to get into education, training and work is lacking and there is consequently a need for this issue to be addressed.

This paper gives a summary of three reports, which provide useful models for thinking about the effects of violence and abuse, in psychological, economic and sociological terms.

Psychological Considerations, explores the effects of “interpersonal violence”, focusing particularly on domestic violence against women, and how healthcare staff and vocational guidance practitioners can improve their practice to help victims to rebuild their lives. It explores the psychological effects of abuse, such as shame, guilt and fear and the impact these effects may have on the willingness of the victim to disclose abuse and to interact with agencies or professionals which are set up to help victims, also on the ability to learn and to take the initiative to move forward.

The Economic Consequences of Abuse explores the complex causes and economic consequences of violence, and public perceptions of different types of violence. Like the psychological report, this focuses on interpersonal violence and on domestic violence against women. The report provides a detailed analysis of three types of economic costs that result from violence and abuse: direct or tangible costs, indirect or intangible costs and opportunity costs. Abuse is presented as a public, not just a private problem, which has wide-reaching economic consequences.

Finally, the Social Dimension takes a wide-ranging view of different forms of violence and types of abuse, showing that these issues are a social problem, not just an individual one. The report examines the approaches taken by academics in different disciplines, including anthropology and sociology, and concludes that inter-disciplinary studies are often the most productive due to the broad range and scope of ideas about violence and abuse and the effect on society as a whole. The report explores the complexity of the causes and effects of violence and makes the final point that violence is a capability in all of us, and can happen to any of us at any point in time. It is therefore of paramount importance that practitioners who seek to help victims of abuse do not make judgements, and are aware of impact of abuse on individuals and the communities they live in.

These papers are commended to help to expand the thinking about this broad and difficult subject. The HOPE project will provide a new perspective for vocational guidance practitioners in the EU.
Vocational Guidance, Abuse, Victims of Abuse, Consequences of Abuse, European Project.