Bringing hope to refugee children in Jordan
please note real names and some details have been changed to protect the identity and safety of individuals involved
Raising money for
Luna Children's Charity
9 year old Aref grew up in Daraa, Syria, where thousands of barrel bombs caused devastation to civilians and homes. In 2014/15,120 people were killed in Daraa alone. At aged 7, Aref saw a bomb drop by his house killing Mahmoud, his cousin and best friend. Until then Aref thought it was safe to play in the street by his home. His family hid underground for 3 days before fleeing to Al-Zataari camp in Jordan. There, Aref met Khaled, a counsellor trained by Luna to use a psychological technique for helping children overcome trauma (CATT). Aref had signs of PTSD; he was unable to talk about what he'd seen. He had regular flashbacks about Mahmoud’s death and was deeply anxious of losing anyone he loved. For 2 years he had nightmares. Any sounds he heard, he thought were planes. His concentration was poor and his thoughts were jumbled. He had great difficulty learning and avoided large groups of people. Khaled worked with Aref using CATT. After only 5 sessions, Aref could talk about what happened. He no longer had nightmares. He was able to play with friends and take part in social gatherings. He was able to tolerate sounds. He was able to work towards his goal of doing better at school.
Improving lives of Syrian refugee children
LUNA works with local partners in countries where there's been conflict or violence against children. It trains (experienced) child health and education practitioners who treat children suffering the effects of psychological trauma (PTSD). In April, a Luna team of volunteers will travel to Jordan to train 20 children’s mental health workers to treat children, like Aref, who so badly need help. We must raise the money quickly to ensure that skilled help is available to these children. It costs £200 to train one local practitioner, who can then treat 20 children or more in a year who have been diagnosed with PTSD and help many more whose symptoms are less severe. The impact of their support on these children that have experienced the unthinkable will last a lifetime. The consequences of traumatic experiences and the symptoms can be overwhelming for children. Without effective treatment and support, they may be unable to live a normal life. The Child Accelerated Trauma Technique that Luna teaches (CATT) helps to improve the lives of children and young people affected by conflict and trauma all over the world.
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