Examines the effects of sociotherapy on social capital and mental pdf leadership social capital empowerment and mental health. Suggests that one sole intervention may promote both civic participation and mental health. Argues for promoting social capital to nurture post-conflict recovery of communities. To date, reviews show inconclusive results on the association between social capital and mental health.
Evidence that social capital can intentionally be promoted is also scarce. Promotion of social capital may impact post-conflict recovery through both increased social cohesion and better mental health. However, studies on community interventions and social capital have mostly relied on cross-sectional study designs. We present a longitudinal study in Rwanda on the effect on social capital and mental health of sociotherapy, a community-based psychosocial group intervention consisting of fifteen weekly group sessions. We hypothesized that the intervention would impact social capital and, as a result of that, mental health. Considering sex and living situation, we selected 100 adults for our experimental group. We formed a control group of 100 respondents with similar symptom score distribution, age, and sex from a random community sample in the same region.
Mental health was assessed by use of the Self Reporting Questionnaire, and social capital through a locally adapted version of the short Adapted Social Capital Assessment Tool. It measures three elements of social capital: cognitive social capital, support, and civic participation. Latent growth models were used to examine whether effects of sociotherapy on mental health and social capital were related. Linear changes over time were not significantly correlated. Support and cognitive social capital did not show consistent changes.