Predictors of Compassion Fatigue and Compassion Satisfaction in Social Workers (A cross-sectional quantitative study from India)

SELWYN STANLEY, Anand Jerard Sebastine

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Abstract

Heightened stress levels are experienced and reported by social work practitioners worldwide and issues such as secondary traumatic stress, burnout and compassion fatigue are terms increasingly being used in the context of social work practice. This study sought to investigate factors that influence compassion fatigue as well as compassion satisfaction in social workers. It was conducted in two cities in south India with a sample of 73 social workers. Standardised instruments were administered to assess compassion fatigue as well as compassion satisfaction besides measures to identify the manifestation of stress and resilience in the respondents. Findings indicate high levels of stress and resilience and significant manifestation of compassion fatigue and burnout levels in the sample studied. It was also observed that the interaction effect between resilience and stress significantly explained the manifestation of compassion fatigue but not that of compassion satisfaction. Implications of these findings have been discussed in terms of influencing individual and organisational factors to enhance resilience, deal more effectively with work-related stress, and reduce burnout and compassion fatigue. This will in the long run bode well for the wellbeing of social workers besides potentially impacting the quality-of-service provision.
Original languageEnglish
JournalHuman Service Organizations Management, Leadership and Governance
Early online date20 Feb 2024
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 20 Feb 2024

Keywords

  • Social Work Burnout
  • Stress in Social Work
  • Social Worker Resilience
  • Compassion Fatigue
  • Compassion Satisfaction
  • Social Work Practice

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