By Tosan Soremi
How does play change the lives of children in refugee camps? Read on and see for yourself!
The learning happens within our games. Our play-based games help children with their physical, cognitive and social development. But that's not all. They develop trust, teamwork and acceptance, helping kids in refugee camps to accept children from different backgrounds and communities.
Play is necessary inside and outside the classroom. These kids are taking part in a World Peace Day activity in an Afghan refugee school in Peshawar, Pakistan. In some refugee communities, schools are limited and children are often left uneducated and disengaged. But our play programs brings learning and engagement together!
These children deserve to live peaceful and healthy lives, right? Right. And our games help make that possible. Youth in refugee camp in Uganda play one of our favorite games called Don't Trust Your Eyes. The kids pass a ball behind their backs and take turns guessing who has it. It encourages a peaceful mindset by teaching them about the stigma involved with diseases like HIV/Aids, and the importance of not judging a person based on their appearance.
A great lesson our games teach kids is, there's no I in team. Play teaches them to accept each other, respect differences and to settle their disagreements with words. Through perseverance, repetition and positive behaviour changes, our programs help these children build a hope-filled, educated, healthy and peaceful generation.
Living in a refugee camp in Uganda isn't easy. But you wouldn't be able to tell looking at these children. Play has taught them resilience during times of extreme violence and changed their attitudes, providing them with an understanding of friendship, fair play and problem-solving. That definitely deserves a thumbs up, don't you agree?