Deliver us from evil: The role of faith and family in coping with stress among African migrants in Australia

Irene Ikafa, Dieu Hack-Polay


The paper examines stressors affecting involuntary and voluntary African migrants in Australia and how they cope with stress. Using semi-structured interviews, the paper examines the experiences of 30 African migrants in Australia. Most participants used a diversity of strategies including the reliance of God and family –usually constructed by alliance rather than kinship -to cope with stress. The key contribution of the paper is to go beyond traditional integration strategies to highlight the significance of God and family as remedies to ‘deliver’ the migrants from the obstacles to effective resettlement and psychological healing.

Keywords: African migrants; stress; God; family; resettlement; coping strategies.

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