Qamishli, Syria – Children are the most physically and psychologically vulnerable group at times of war or crisis. The traumatic situations they live are manifested in their games; armed groups, rebels, protest leaders, checkpoints and killing, all in children’s minds.
Specialists assert, “Bikes, balls, wooden toys… no longer mean much for the child.”
Psychiatrist Kawthar Rahim told ARA News: “Childhood is a sensitive age when children are liable to many psychological diseases and traumas that may affect their whole mental and intellectual life. Syrian children who lost dears such as a father, a sibling or a friend will grow up weak and vengeful.”
“Daily violence on TV or in reality will have negative impact on children; they may practice that in the future. These negative ideas make children feel insecure and terrified and lose their self-confidence. Families and civic organizations should work together to create non-war zone for children where they have entertaining activities as well as psychosocial support,” Rahim said.
Rim al-Harbi, a Syria primary school teacher, told ARA News: “At the end of the day, children go home acting a protest and yell for or against the regime depending on what they see on TV or reality. Their drawings reflect depression and war; they no longer draw rivers and mountains but warplanes, camps and checkpoints as well as destruction. They draw their lost or killed dears.”
Many civic organizations have held entertaining workshops for children where plays, songs and games are distant from war.
Nazik Resul, member of Shawshka organization, stated to ARA News that since the start of the Syrian crisis, “we have worked with UNICEF where we had trainings on children treatment under war circumstances”.
“We also raise parents’ awareness on how to deal with psychologically traumatic children,” said Resul. “We cannot remove war images from children’s minds but we can create a small peaceful space for them.”
Many psychiatrists find the work of these organizations shallow where they do not concentrate on children’s rehabilitation or solve the core problem.
Reporting by: Ahin Mohammed
Source: ARA News
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