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Evelyn Wilcox,

Resources to support psychosocial wellbeing, developed for refugee children, parents, and young people and for NGO workers

Refugee Trauma Initiative and our partners deliver Baytna - a trauma- and identity-informed model of Early Childhood Education for refugee children and their families living in Greece. Baytna was being implemented across five centres up until early March 2020, when delivery was halted due to government regulations related to COVID-19.

While centres are closed, it is important to us that we continue to support the families who attended Baytna so that they feel cared for, emotionally and socially supported, and still have activities to do that are aligned with the Baytna model. Relationships are the core of Baytna, and we want to keep the relationships with children and families alive by providing simple activities that are modified for different age groups and which don’t require materials. We provide written, audio and visual materials to appeal to different preferences and literacy needs.

RTI’s response to COVID-19 included developing activity ideas, videos, and other resources, hosted on a resource library on our website, that are aimed at supporting psychosocial wellbeing. This includes supporting the relationship between mothers and children, assisting with relaxation through mindfulness activities, helping with the identification, regulation and release of emotions, and providing children with a crucial opportunities for fun and play. Resources include: story-telling, movement, interactive songs, ‘how to’ storytelling prop guides. Also relaxation and release audio and visual guides for parents such as grounding and breathing meditation techniques. They are being developed in a variety of languages to meet the needs of the diverse community we work with, and are being created in a collaborative way that draws on the different strengths of our partners. Crucially, the resources are focused on psychosocial support and identity- and trauma-informed.