Conflict and violence are forcing millions of children and youth out of education in their crucial formative years. A huge part of building their resilience is through restoring these learning structures through formal or informal education to ensure they can continue to thrive and develop their intellectual capacity with renewed hope for the future. This also means ensuring refugee students are able to adapt and function healthily in the classroom. Our aim is to better equip educators with mental health training to respond to the challenges and needs of refugee students.
We will be working with child protection psychologists and youth development therapists to create teacher training on mental health awareness and protection issues, and promote confidence and competence in their ability to support refugee students. Our workshops and training for teachers cater to secondary school to postgraduate level (ages 10-27) and is delivered as ongoing support to deal with evolving challenges in and around schools and campuses.
We will also research and engage teachers, practitioners and policymakers on the psychosocial benefit of schooling, particularly reading, sport and play. This will explore how safe spaces can be created within schools and universities, the development of curriculum and syllabuses that allows for all students to understand and support their peers, and the role of the local community in supporting integration efforts among those newly arrived.
We are currently creating a teachers network so that educators can connect and communicate their experiences and training needs to support the well-being of refugee students. This network will help create our guide on integration, mental health and resilience for educators and students.