Violence and Depression in Baltimore and Johannesburg: Teasing Apart Experiences of Violence among Adolescents

Hannah Lantos, Johns Hopkins University
Sinead Delaney, University of the Witwatersrand
Heena Brahmbatt, University of the Witwatersrand

15-19 year olds in low-income neighborhoods of Baltimore and Johannesburg were recruited to participate in a study on adolescent health. Adolescents were recruited through respondent-driven sampling and completed ACASI interviews. Logistic regressions were conducted to assess the association between three perceptions of neighborhood violence measures and depression. All analyses are stratified by site and gender. 25% of adolescents in Baltimore and 20% in Johannesburg reported experiencing fear. Observing violence was reported by just under a quarter in Baltimore and 10% in Johannesburg while 41.2% and 67.1% in Baltimore and Johannesburg respectively reported victimization. At least one of type of violence was associated with depression. In conclusion, fear, observation and victimization differ in their relationship with depression for boys and girls in each site. Better screening in order to provide mental health care for adolescents in these neighborhoods is important and enhancing social support mechanisms for young people.

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 Presented in Session P7. Health and Mortality of Women, Children and Families