Consultant Clinical Psychologist/Psychiatrist, Northern Province Sri Lanka

Proactive case detection for children in need of psychosocial care.

Introduction

War Child Holland (WCH) is an independent and impartial international non-governmental organization investing in a peaceful future for children and young people affected by armed conflict. We strive to empower children and young people while enabling adults to bring about positive and lasting change in the lives of conflict affected children and young people. In the next five years (2016 – 2020), based on innovation of our approaches, and solid research of our outcomes and impact, War Child aims to evolve towards a globally renowned and recognised expert organisation in the field of psychosocial well-being of children and youth affected by conflict.

The Project

One of our research projects is focusing on the development of a tool to better understand which children and families might be in need for additional psychosocial care to improve access to these services.

A group of selected and trusted members of the community “Community Supporters”, who are closely connected to children/families in the selected communities will be trained in the use of this tool. The tool gives a series of vignettes (fictional case stories) and illustrations, which describe children and families experiencing clusters of emotional, behavioural and relationship issues. The selected and trained Community Supporters will be asked whether any of the children and families they see in their daily routine match the vignettes and illustrations. After positive identification (a “match” with the tool), the community member will approach the family of the child and support help seeking in a professional way. They will invite the family for an assessment done by trained War Child/partner staff counsellor to assess the needs of the child or family, and to refer the children/families to relevant available services.

The Research

Before implementing the tool, War Child Holland would like to test out whether such a tool is effective in increasing access to relevant and available care for children and/or families. The first phase of the research project will be implemented in the Northern Province and is focusing on the accuracy of the tool; hence, we are trying to answer the question: “How accurate is the tool used by community members in recommending the right children/families in the community for extra help?” This will be done by a comparison of the detection tool outcomes done by the Community Supporters, with the outcomes of an already validated clinical interview (done by a small group of trained local senior counsellors) and a short questionnaire done by a research assistant. For this validation study, War Child is looking for a clinical (child) psychologist or psychiatrist who is able to deliver a training in the structured clinical interviewing following the MINI Kid (© Copyright 1998-2016 Sheehan DV) and in the adapted version of the Adverse Childhood Experience-International Questionnaire (WHO, 2008) and conduct bi-weekly supervision meetings with the senior counsellors.

The purpose of this consultancy is to train a group of 3-4 selected senior counsellors (+/- 7 years of experience in counselling) in conducting a structured clinical interview with children or their parents (incl. administration of data in a set format) based on which the counsellors are able to refer children and families to relevant services available. In addition to this, the consultant clinical psychologist/psychiatrist is asked to supervise data collection and referrals done by the counsellors on a bi-weekly basis (the actual diagnosis should be done by the counsellors) and support in finalizing the instruments (i.e. module selection).

Requirements

  • PhD in Clinical, Community, or Educational Psychology (or a certified equivalent degree from a university)
  • At 8 years of experience in a community mental health setting (preferably with children/adolescents).
  • Demonstrated strong verbal and written communication skills
  • Must have an active state license
  • Excellent research and analytical capabilities
  • Demonstrated experience in capacity building, training and curriculum development.
  • Fluent in Tamil, both spoken and written
  • Strong English language skills
  • Able and willing to travel to villages in the Northern Province, Sri Lanka.
  • Open-minded; you have a non-judgmental attitude and demonstrated interpersonal skills, including ability to discuss difficult topics with sensitivity and respect.

Deliverables and responsibilities

  • Support in selecting relevant modules of the M.I.N.I. Kid together with international child psychologist/psychiatrist
  • Proof reading and adaptation of the Tamil version of the adapted version of the ACE-IQ
  • Provide a 5-8 day training in clinical interviewing and administering the M.I.N.I. Kid and the ACE-IQ
  • Support in criteria development for referral
  • Bi-weekly supervision of 3-4 senior counsellors for checking data completeness, and referrals done by the counsellors.

Reporting

The consultant clinical psychologist/psychiatrist reports directly to the International Research Coordinator and the Director R&D based in the R&D department in Amsterdam with operational line management by the War Child Hollands Programme Manager in Jaffna.

Conditions

A fixed daily compensation of LKR 10,000 including all other expenses

Number of days/hours

  • Instrument finalization: 2 days
  • Training delivery: 5-8 days 09:00 AM – 04:00 PM
  • Bi-weekly supervision sessions for 3,5 months

Commencement date

Expected training dates are between the end of January and beginning of February 2019. The consultant Flexibility is required, as the starting dates are to be confirmed (depending on IRB ethical approval).

How to apply

Interested and qualified candidates are invited to apply before 04-01-2019. Make sure to send your motivation letter and resume to Duminda.Sarachchandra@warchild.nl

Applications will be considered on a rolling basis.

The safety of children is essential to War Child. War Child does not tolerate or accept any form of abuse. This subject is addressed in our recruitment and selection procedures.