Leaving your own birthland behind, facing a long and dangerous journey to escape from wars and poverty, for sure is not an easy experience.
If it can be traumatic for an adult, you can imagine how this can affect a little child.
It’s in this context where the Kindergarten project of OCC aims to operate, with a safe space where families with a refugee background can find relief and guarantee a proper emotional and socio-educational growth for their younger members, who now can engage in various activities under the supervision of properly trained volunteers, whose training was delivered by the professional educators of Refugee Trauma Initiative.
Opened in April 2019, the space is also named Baytna, after the Arabic word for “Our Home”, as a new home is what it aims to become for these children left without one, along with their caregivers, and to achieve this goal, OCC propose a schedule whose activities were thought to stimulate at 360° the development of their little guests: A fundamental role was played by art, with drawing, crafting and painting implemented as tools to express and boost their creativity, although without forgetting moments for relaxation, physical activity and meditation.
Even now, with the facility closed due to covid restrictions, the volunteers didn’t cut the connection with families, carried through remote ways, as the Storytelling project, based on the weekly sending of stories with educational content, written in English, Arabic and Farsi, and soon available also in audiobook format; the same attitude for creative writing lead to the publishing of the educational book “Magical Traffik Light”, a tale about street code and security, while it’s on the way the redaction of a second, with the provisional title of “Nousha’s Dream”, the story of a young dancer fighting against gender stereotypes.
"This project is funded by the EU Commission, the ESC program and the Greek National Agency Youth and Lifelong Learning INEDIVIM"