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To defend the rights and dignity of the child worldwide

23 May 2016 | 10:36

Helping children displaced by the conflict in Ukraine

For several months, BICE and its partners are in Ukraine to form “resilience tutors”. The objective? Helping children displaced by the conflict to overcome their traumas.

Providing assistance & support to displaced children

In addition to the thousands of dead and wounded, the conflict in the east of the Ukraine has also caused massive movements of the population.

Nearly 2 million people have had to leave their homes to escape the fighting and the violence.

The adjustment difficulties and post-traumatic stress suffered by families and particularly
by displaced children prompted the action of BICE and its partners to provide them with psychological support.

Thanks to their experience on resilience, BICE and its partner organizations, Women’s Consortium of Ukraine (WCU),
Vostok-SOS and the Catholic University of Milan, have implemented activities to enable
childhood professionals to better accompany children destabilized by the conflict and to encourage their resilience.

The ‘resilience tutors’ alongside the children

In September 2015, BICE and its partners held a first session of training for psychologists and social workers working
daily with displaced children.

To extend and develop this action, a second training session was held from 31 March to 3 April 2016.
It was attended by 21 youth professionals.

During the 4 days of training, the participants were able to advance their knowledge on:

  • the process of resilience in children;
  • the internal and external resources (families, friends, school) that the children can use in their psychological reconstruction;
  • the expressing of feelings and how to handle the trauma.

Another theme discussed was to identify how youth professionals can become themselves “resilience tutors”, i.e. a
resource for the children in their resilience process.

In addition to the theoretical aspects, workshops were also organized with the children. Using drawings, games or
stories, children are better able to express their emotions and to become aware of their opportunities
and their resources.

Children-parents workshops were also implemented to strengthen family ties and to involve parents in their childrens’resilience.

The impact of training in the reconstruction process of children

In the coming months, all the participants will carry out an evaluation in order to measure the impact of their intervention based on the concept ‘resilience tutors’ on the psychological reconstruction of the children that are being helped.

On the basis of the results obtained, a follow-up training will be organized to assist psychologists
and social workers to adjust their involvement with displaced children.