Play therapy for Syrian refugee children
Fundraising campaign by Sarah Elliott
I am fundraising to set up a play therapy research project which will be hosted by the Middle East Children’s Institute (MECI) in Jordan. The project is designed for Syrian refugee children and will take place over a three month period (it is anticipated to run between June & August 2016). These play therapy sessions will have a special focus on children’s resilience.
Many refugee children from Syria have experienced what no child should ever witness or be a part of. Some people say the children’s childhood has been stolen by war and the current crisis. Play therapy provides a place for children to express and explore their thoughts, fears and emotions in a safe child friendly way. Instead of relying on words alone (which children can find very difficult), play therapy uses play and creative expression as a form of communication.
In 2014, I visited Jordan to meet Syrian families to understand more about their story whilst also helping in the distribution of food and aid such as, bedding, blankets and heaters amongst other things. Whilst meeting these families, the mothers frequently mentioned how their children were very anxious, wet their beds, were afraid to go outside, had nightmares and cried a lot. When meeting the many children and families the all too often request was, “please come help my child / children”. This is the main reason I have chosen to go back to Jordan.
My professional time spent throughout this three-month period will be conducted on a totally voluntary basis. Of the money raised, 75% will go directly into facilitating this project through buying creative and therapeutic equipment. The remaining 25% will go towards personal expenses and living costs whilst in Jordan.
I fully understand that not everyone can volunteer their time to help these Syrian refugee children. However, wouldn’t it be wonderful if the generosity of family, friends and strangers could help facilitate this project to such an extent that, as the research concludes, I can provide MECI with a really generous gift towards their wonderful work.
Please feel free to contact me if you have any further questions. Periodically, I will be adding comments on the progress of this project here and on Facebook. This is in order that, those who have made a financial contribution towards this project may see how it is progressing. My thanks in advance for your kindness, generosity and support.