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Through educational curricula

Striving for Peace through Forgiveness in Sierra Leone: Effectiveness of a Psychoeducational Forgiveness Intervention

Loren L. Toussaint, Nancy Peddle, Alyssa Cheadle, Anthony Sellu, Frederic Luskin

The Journal of Positive Psychology, 2018

Research details

Type of paper: Primary Empirical Study

Sample size: 24

Open Access: No


The purpose of this chapter is twofold. First, forgiveness is discussed as a culturally relevant response for coping and meaning-making in the wake of a decade-long civil war in Sierra Leone. Cultural aspects of coping which include rituals and traditions are discussed. A case is made for forgiveness as a culturally appropriate means of coping with the trauma of civil war. Second, an adaptation of a university-based forgiveness education curriculum is discussed. Development of this curriculum for Sierra Leoneans is described and its scientific evaluation is presented. The results of our evaluation suggest that adapting a research-driven psychoeducational forgiveness curriculum was effective in eliciting individual-level change that ultimately can provide the foundation for group and cultural forgiveness.