Digital storytelling as a social work tool : learning from ethnographic research with women from refugee backgrounds

Lenette, Caroline, Cox, Leonie, & Brough, Mark (2015) Digital storytelling as a social work tool : learning from ethnographic research with women from refugee backgrounds. British Journal of Social Work, 45(3), pp. 988-1005.

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This paper reflects on the wider potential of digital narratives as a useful tool for social work practitioners. Despite the multiple points of connection between narrative approaches and social work, the influence of narratives on practice remains limited. A case study of a digital storytelling (DST) process employed in a research project with a small group of lone mothers from refugee backgrounds is used to trigger discussion of broader applications of DST as part of everyday social work practice. The use of DST acknowledged women’s capacities for self-representation and agency, in line with participatory and strengths-based approaches inherent in contemporary social work. The benefits of using DST with lone mothers from refugee backgrounds illustrate how this method can act as a pathway to produce counter-narratives, both at the individual and broader community levels. Documenting life stories digitally provides the opportunity to construct narratives about experiences of relocation and settlement as tools for social advocacy, which can assist social workers to ensure meaningful outcomes for service-users. These propositions can serve to inform social work practices with people from refugee backgrounds and address some of the intricacies of working in diverse and challenging contexts.

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ID Code: 65104
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional Information: First published online: November 19, 2013
Keywords: Counter-narrative, digital storytelling, narrative, social work, women from refugee backgrounds
DOI: 10.1093/bjsw/bct184
ISSN: 0045-3102
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > SOCIAL WORK (160700)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Nursing
Current > Schools > School of Public Health & Social Work
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 The Authors
Copyright Statement: This is a pre-copyedited, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication in British Journal of Social Work following peer review. The definitive publisher-authenticated version [British Journal of Social Work (In Press)] is available online at: xxxxxxx [insert URL that the author will receive upon publication here].
Deposited On: 04 Dec 2013 22:47
Last Modified: 01 Jun 2015 04:30

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