For the hundreds of thousands of men, women and children in refugee camps after fleeing the Middle East, the journey is far from over. Many are dealing with the traumatic after effects of war, violence, rape, the loss of family, home and belongings. There is the added trauma of living in the camps, where children often receive no education and women and girls are vulnerable to sexual exploitation and trafficking.
There are enormous efforts from the international donor community to provide support to these refugees, such as emergency aid, peace building projects, healthcare and educational programmes. Middle East Media is uniquely placed to complement these efforts through our creative media training and productions.
Middle East Media has an impressive range of creative media programmes and training, designed to give a voice to the voiceless and hope to the hopeless. We want to adapt these resources to make a difference where the need is greatest, among the refugee camps of Europe and the Middle East.
Some of the resources which could be adapted include children’s educational curriculum and animated TV programmes, our gender-based violence curriculum, media therapy and emotional intelligence training for women, and filmmaking camps for children and young people.
We have developed a curriculum for refugee children built around episodes of our popular DreamMaker 3D animated series. Many refugee children feel powerless in the face of the terrible circumstances that have befallen them. The idea of this curriculum is to teach children to dream again, to help them take control of their own lives, and to empower them with hope and purpose for the future.
In each session of the curriculum, the children will watch an episode of DreamMaker and discuss it together, and there will also be simple activities to help the children make positive steps into their future. Overall, the curriculum aims to give children a healthy sense of self, to give them the tools to discover their true potential and how to overcome despair.
Life in the Desert
Life in the Desert is our new 3D animated series for children aged 5-9, to help them deal with loss and fear and encourage them through the examples of real Biblical heroes. Many children in the Middle East, particularly those in conflict zones, are dealing with trauma, fear, loss and grief. This series will provide comfort, support and reassurance to children, as well as equipping them to deal with the difficult challenges they face.
The series follows the story of a young girl called Farah. After her mother dies, she goes to live with her father and starts to find comfort through the stories of the Bible. The series will be aired on our partner's TV channels, as well as being shown in refugee camps.
Life in the Desert Workshops
In partnership with child psychologists, our North Africa team has developed a series of trauma recovery workshops to go alongside our Life in the Desert animated series. We hope to run these workshops with groups of refugee children in Lebanon, Iraq and Jordan. Ultimately, the aim is to encourage traumatised children to lift their eyes to God, in whom true healing is found.