Healing The Hidden
|Volume 17, No. 2||Spring 2014|
Scars Of Displaced Syrians
As Syria's violent civil war enters its fourth year, the number of Syrians traumatized by what they have witnessed or endured continues to grow. Recognizing the importance of addressing not only the physical but also the psychological needs during this time of conflict, IOCC and its church partner in Syria, the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch and All the East (GOPA), are providing trauma counseling to more than 2,300 displaced and vulnerable Syrian people.
Families take part in a four-day retreat where children and the parents engage in separate activities in a safe environment. Children's activities such as puppet making, drawing and drama are designed to help the youngsters rebuild their communication and interaction skills along with confidence and trust. The children are also encouraged to strengthen their connections with people, and to develop a stronger sense of self and community. Adult participants are taken through activities that provide them with the necessary tools to cope with their own stress as well as the emotional needs of their children, and to help rebuild self-confidence.