Sense of coherence and sense of community as coping resources of religious adolescents before and after the disengagement* from the Gaza Strip Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • In August 2005, all of the Jewish communities in the Gaza Strip were permanently evacuated, implementing a political decision of the Israeli government. Employing the salutogenic approach, this study explores individual and community coping resources - sense of coherence and sense of community - among adolescents who were displaced from their homes. We examined the way these coping resources operated in three stages: before the disengagement from Gaza, a few months after the event, and five years after the disengagement. Data were gathered among religious adolescents who had grown up in small Jewish communities in the Gaza Strip. Adolescents aged 12-18 filled out self-reported questionnaires, evaluating state anxiety and state anger as stress reactions, and sense of coherence and sense of community as coping resources. Results suggest that both sense of coherence and sense of community were weakened immediately after the disengagement. However, sense of coherence has recovered five years after the event. Furthermore, during the two stages after the disengagement, sense of coherence and sense of community had more explanatory power of stress reactions than during the acute state. Results are discussed against the backdrop of the salutogenic model, including practical implications for different interventions which should be applied in various states of stress.

publication date

  • January 1, 2013