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ARTICHOKE STUDIO

Project - Art Therapy at the Children's Learning Centre (CLC): Addressing the impact of trauma on educational attainment 

1 September 2018 - 30 June 2019

Our experience in the region indicated that refugee children faced a lack of educational opportunity combined with dire living conditions to which led to exposure to negative coping mechanisms such as physical and/or psychological violence, child labour and exploitation, early marriage, and recruitment by armed groups. They were also vulnerable to problems related to integration, identity and belonging.

 

In line with our mission, AMF focused on alternative education and ‘art for wellbeing’ initiatives. Programmes were bespoke and underwent regular revision and improvement to ensure that they continued to meet the unique set of challenges faced by displaced children. Any staff hired, especially teachers, received regular training and coaching to better equip them to work with Syrian refugee and out-of-school host community children, and to carefully adapt the curriculum to meet individual needs. 


This programme aimed to equip teachers working with refugee children with special training to deliver an adapted academic programme, as well as the ability to deal with individuals’ personal issues: the internalised trauma caused by displacement. Additionally 'Teachers’ Self-Development and Self-Care Workshops' were designed to ease the personal strain as they worked to implement these new approaches.

 

In addition to the teacher training element, group therapy sessions for children and parents' sessions were also implemented.