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Loneliness as an unresolved issue in social inclusion programmes


Ainara Arnoso ,

University of Basque Country, ES
About Ainara
I am PhD in Psychology and Master in Group Analysis. I am Associate Professor in the Department of Social Psychology at the University of the Basque Country and I am director of the Master’s in psychology of Organizations and Psychosocial Intervention at the same University. I am Board Member of the Spanish Association of Group Psychotherapy and Techniques (SEPTG). I have conducted research on gender violence, social exclusion and evaluation of psychosocial intervention programs with different populations. From an applied perspective, my other research work focuses on migration processes and mental health, child-to-parent violence and groups interventions with clients sharing the same critical fact.
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Javier Sancho,

Emaus Social Foundation, ES
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Edurne Elgorriaga,

University of Basque Country, ES
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Maitane Arnoso

University of Basque Country, ES
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Loneliness, social isolation and exclusion are worldwide social problems with negative effects which are exacerbated in deprived groups and communities. From a qualitative perspective, this paper examines the approach to loneliness in 62 community-based social inclusion centres and programmes for people experiencing exclusion in the Basque Country (Spain). The aim of the study was to identify good practice in dealing with loneliness in centres and programmes and to understand the main challenges in providing support from the perspective of practitioners. The results show that best practices focus on individualised or person-centred interventions, the generation of interaction spaces that promote social relations, accompaniment as an intervention tool, empowerment and community participation, and employment and socio-professional training. The main challenges and difficulties are grouped into four levels. These include the users' own individual difficulties (lack of motivation, progressive deterioration and poor social skills, etc.). To a lesser extent, insufficient professionalisation of inclusion services, insufficient resources (lack of human and material means) and society's own difficulties such as stigma and social rejection are mentioned. It discusses the community intervention implications that practitioners can take into account to mitigate the loneliness of people at risk and/or socially excluded.
How to Cite: Arnoso, A., Sancho, J., Elgorriaga, E. and Arnoso, M., 2022. Loneliness as an unresolved issue in social inclusion programmes. Journal of Social Inclusion, 13(2), p.None.
Published on 22 Dec 2022.
Peer Reviewed


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