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Melvin Stephens

Enhancing forgiveness: a group intervention for the elderly

Archived Abstract of Former PSC Researcher

Ingersoll-Dayton, Berit, R. Campbell, and Jung-Hwa Ha. 2009. "Enhancing forgiveness: a group intervention for the elderly." Journal of Gerontological Social Work, 52(1): 2-16.

This article describes a therapeutic model of forgiveness (Enright, 2001) and discusses its applicability to social work intervention with older adults. A total of 20 men and women, aged 57-82, participated in 2 different forgiveness groups, each of which met weekly for 8 sessions with a 4-month follow-up session. Measures of forgiveness, as well as biopsychosocial functioning, were collected before and after the group intervention. Results indicated that participants experienced long-term improvement with respect to forgiveness and depression, short-term improvement of physical health, and no change in relation to anxiety or social support. Clinical issues that emerged during the forgiveness group are discussed, and suggestions for gerontological social workers are offered.

DOI:10.1080/01634370802561901 (Full Text)

Country of focus: United States of America.

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