About Us and Our Community
Activities for Children at New Hope Center
At NHC, the grieving child gets support on his/her grief journey in a caring and safe environment. Children support children and teens support teens with the guidance of trained facilitators. The children come to the Center once a week for a year, and after that, once a month for as long as he or she wants to come.
How do they get this support on their grief journey? It can happen through:
● Talking, sharing in a circle around a “camp fire”
● Dancing, singing and music
● Drawing, coloring, writing, journaling
● Playing - reenacting events (military camp, hospital, house),
sandbox, ping-pong, foosball, soccer, punching bag, skits etc.
We trust the process of healing as we walk with the kids on their grief journey. The children are served a porridge rich in protein. The Center also provides lessons in nutrition, health and etiquette.
As funds come in we try to help children with medical care, school fees and uniforms. The needs are so great.
Training Grief Facilitators
Another very important part of what we do at NHC is the training of lay people from the community to be grief facilitators. In Eastern Congo, every community has been affected by war, poverty, unemployment and disease. There are very few, if any, resources for traumatized families and children. Furthermore, the culture marginalizes people who are suffering the effects of trauma and often stigmatizes those who seek psychological treatment.
Our training is designed to teach the skills needed to create a safe environment for and to give mutual encouragement and support to children, teens, and adults grieving a death. The training is free to the volunteers. A facilitator has many characteristics, but a crucial attribute is empathetic listening.
The training usually lasts four days. Afterwards, we conduct follow-up site visits (as security allows) so that we can encourage the volunteers and help them develop their own programs to address the needs of their community.