Improving psychosocial well-being of child laborers and young people who are engaged in low-income economic activities in Istanbul, Turkey
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Child laborers are typically subjected to multiple and chronic traumatic experiences. With no parents or caregivers to act as a buffer zone against stressors, they grow up in chaotic and unpredictable work environments. Child laborers are more at risk of developing a range of psychological, emotional, and behavioral problems. The authors established an 8-month psychosocial support program for child laborers and young people attending a vocational training center one day a week. The authors found that anxiety and depression moderately correlated with negative self-concept, somatization, and hostility. Toward the end of the 8-month program, participants reported improved psychological and emotional well-being. The provision of a safe and mediated psychosocial program enhanced the emotional and mental wellbeing of vulnerable children and young people.