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“Children and war. Teaching healing techniques”

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During the war, children, like adults, can repeatedly become victims of various terrible events that traumatize the psyche. They can witness artillery shelling and shooting, and observe the destruction of their native town or village, or even their homes. Children may suffer heavy losses, and see their family members and friends injured or dying. Children themselves may be injured. Such experiences can lead to a variety of psychological problems in children.

Our specialists, namely social pedagogue Yulia Kozlova and community facilitator Olena Belik, were trained under the program “Children and War. Teaching healing techniques”. The training was conducted by certified trainers and psychologists of the project – Iryna Sukhova, Natalia Podolyak, and Olena Bozhor. These techniques, once taught to teenagers, can help them overcome any type of stress and help reduce its overall level.

Olena and Yulia in the final of the training

For more than a month, our experts held 7 meetings with two groups of teenagers from different cities affected by the war or close to the front line. The classes were held online, which was an additional challenge, so in their work, they used not only the knowledge gained during the course, but also their own developments, such as creative stickers “Today I choose…”, various energizers, “icebreaker” exercises, and each group created its own special ritual for the end of the class, as an example of an individual approach to the participants. Modern applications for online graphic facilitation also helped in the work, which was used for deeper involvement and created an opportunity to reveal their experiences even if they were not present at that moment.

According to the observations of our trainers, this course had a very positive impact on adolescents, which is supported by the monitoring data after its completion. For example, a decrease in the level of anxiety of almost all participants was recorded. The participants themselves note the changes that have occurred in their psychological and emotional state and in general. Here are some of their reviews:

“I liked the program very much, it helps to distract from unnecessary thoughts or worries, I am very grateful to you,” says participant Anastasia Tkach about her impressions after the course.

One of the meetings

It was also important for us to teach children knowing that they can use on their own when specialists are not around, here are Stas Gorlov’s thoughts about it: “I think I will need this useful knowledge in stressful situations, so I will use it!”

Also, it is worth noting that all the participants became very close during the implementation of the program and this is evidenced by their feedback: “Yes, the knowledge gained helps me a lot. After this training I started to feel better. Thanks to everyone who participated in this program ❤️”, – Ksenia Tsuryk, participant of the program “Children and War. Teaching healing techniques”.

In view of this, our specialists could not just finish the program, and it was decided to organize informal meetings every few weeks so that everyone could communicate and support each other in familiar groups. By supporting each other, we can overcome everything!

Several meetings with two different groups

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