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About Panos Vostanis

Professor Vostanis has published extensively on the impact of trauma on child mental health, evaluation of interventions and services for traumatized children, including those living in conflict settings. Other research includes school mental health and service evaluation. He founded the World Awareness for Children in Trauma programme ( to develop evidence-based psychosocial interventions and capacity building for vulnerable children and young people. To this effect, he is involved in several projects with NGOs and academic centres in Asia, Africa and Latin America, especially on service improvement. Professor Vostanis has longstanding clinical experience as a child psychiatrist with vulnerable children, young people and families, i.e. in care, homeless, adopted, refugees, young offenders, or living in disadvantage.


Over the years, Professor Vostanis has developed and evaluated a range of child mental health training programmes, usually in an interprofessional context, for frontline professionals, foster carers, residential care staff and volunteers. Since 2015, approximately 1,500 staff have participated in training across 14 low- and middle-income countries (LMIC). These aim at the development of practice competencies and systemic changes. They are supported by a range of training resources, and include remote and blended learning formats of delivery. In an academic capacity, he supervises PhD and Masters students, and has contributed to medical student and psychology teaching in different undergraduate courses.


Current research projects include:

  • Design, implementation and evaluation of child mental health service plans in South Africa disadvantaged communities, as well as targeting refugee children in Turkey and the UK.
  • Children’s and young people’s vision of the post-pandemic world in five LMIC in relation to different life domains.
  • Psychosocial supports for disadvantaged children in India.
  • Youth perspectives on the development of peer educator role in LMIC.

Published Work

Recent selected publications include:

Vostanis, P., Haffejee, S., Yazici, H., Hussein, S., Tosun, C. & Maltby, J. (2020) Youth conceptualization of resilience strategies in four low- and middle-income countries. International Journal of Child, Youth and Family Studies, 11, 91-110.

Getanda, E.M. & Vostanis, P. (2020) Feasibility evaluation of psychosocial evaluation for internally displaced youth in Kenya. Journal of Mental Health,


Eruyar, S. & Vostanis, P. (2020) Feasibility of group theraplay with refugee children in Turkey. Counselling and Psychotherapy Research, 20, 626-637.

Yildirim, M., Iqbal, N., Khan, M. M., O’Reilly, M. & Vostanis, P. (2020) Psychosocial needs and supports for street children in India: Stakeholder perspectives. International Child Development and Mental Health, doi:10.13140/RG.2.2.21427.45605

Samara, M., Hammuda, S., Vostanis, P., El-Khodary, B. & Al-Dewik, N. (2020) Children’s prolonged exposure to the toxic stress of war trauma in the Middle East. British Medical Journal, 371, m3155, doi:org/10.1136/bmj.m3155

Vostanis, P. & Bell, C. (2020) Counselling and psychotherapy post COVID-19. Counselling and Psychotherapy Research, 20, 3, 389-393.

Eruyar, S., Maltby, J. & Vostanis, P. (2020) How do Syrian refugee children in Turkey perceive relational factors in the context of their mental health? Clinical Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 24, 260-272.

Tamburrino, I., Getanda, E., O’Reilly, M. & Vostanis, P. (2020) “Everybody’s responsibility”: Conceptualisation of youth mental health in Kenya. Journal of Child Health Care, 24, 5-18.

Vostanis, P. (2019) World Awareness for Children in Trauma: Capacity-building activities of a psychosocial program. International Journal of Mental Health, 48, 323-329.

Vostanis, P., Eruyar, S., Smit, E. & O’Reilly, M. (2019) Development of child psychosocial framework in Kenya, Turkey and Brazil. Journal of Children’s Services, 14, 303-316.

Vostanis, P., O’Reilly, M., Duncan, C., Maltby, J. & Anderson, E. (2019) Interprofessional training for resilience-building for children who experience trauma: Stakeholders’ views from six low- and middle-income countries. Journal of Interprofessional Care, 33, 143-152.

Hodes, M. & Vostanis, P. (2019) Mental health problems of refugee children and adolescents and their management. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 60, 716-731.

Majumder, P., Vostanis, P., Karim, K. & O’Reilly, M. (2019) Potential barriers in the therapeutic relationship in unaccompanied minors in mental health. Journal of Mental Health, 28, 372-378.

Baldwin, R., Biehal, N., Cusworth, L., Wade, J., Allgar, V. & Vostanis, P. (2019) Disentangling the effect of out-of-home care on child mental health. Child Abuse and Neglect, 88, 189-200.

Jalal, E., O'Reilly, M., Bhakta, T., & Vostanis, P. (2019) Barriers to implementing learning from child protection training in Saudi Arabia. International Social Work, 62, 1493-06.

Vostanis, P. (2018) Hope for Children of Trauma: An International Perspective. London: Taylor & Francis.

Vostanis, P., Maltby, J., Duncan, C. & O’Reilly, M. (2018) Stakeholder perspectives on children’s psychosocial needs in six low- and middle-income countries. Children and Society, 32, 457-469.

Wadman, R., Vostanis, P., Sayal, K., Majumder, P., Harrow, C., Clarke, D.,  Armstrong, M. & Townsend, E. (2018) An interpretative phenomenological analysis of young people’s self-harm in the context of interpersonal stressors and supports. Social Science and Medicine, 212, 120-128.

Eruyar, S., Huemer, J. & Vostanis, P. (2018) How should refugee services respond to the refugee crisis? Child and Adolescent Mental Health, 23, 303-312.

Eruyar, S., Maltby, J. & Vostanis, P. (2018) Mental health problems of Syrian refugee children: The role of parental factors. European Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 27, 401-9.

Vostanis, P. (2017) (Editorial) Global child mental health: Emerging challenges and opportunities. Child and Adolescent Mental Health, 22, 177-178.

Wolpert, M., Vostanis, P., & Feltham, A. (2017) High integrity child mental health: Focusing on the person, not the problem. British Medical Journal, 357, j1500.

Getanda, E., O’Reilly, M. & Vostanis, P. (2017). Exploring the challenges of meeting child mental health needs through community engagement in Kenya. Child and Adolescent Mental Health, 22, 201-208.