Reading stories about refugees and migration, of hope and survival, can have a profound impact on them, in both a real and an abstract sense. We aren’t saying this wistfully as people without children often do…we have kids and truly believe in the power of storytelling and exposure. Invest in these stories – write them yourself. Give your children exposure to heroes and villains outside their typical worldview. If they have questions, answer them the best you can. Be honest and real. Engage in discussions. Steer away from using stereotypes or minimizing the cultural value. If you don’t have a good answer – do the research together about the country or the conflict. Our children will perhaps understand the meaning of hope better than we do.
Here’s a new one from Greece – we can’t wait to read this to our kids.
From the Starfish Foundation:
Last year, one family from Iraq had landed in the village of Skala Sikamias, which is located at the north shore of Lesvos, Greece. They had brought with them,all the way from Mosul-Iraq, hidden in a box,
their white cat ”Kunkush”. During the landing the cat jumped out of the box and disappeared… The family, together with the volunteers, were searching all day to find ”Kunkush” but all their efforts were to no avail. The family was very upset but they couldn’t stay any longer to continue the search. They had to move on to the capital of the island.
Few days later, two volunteers found the cat who promised to find, and deliver, ”Kunkush” to his family. After a long search, trying to find where the family had been relocated, finally the cat was reunited with its family in… Norway!!!
The story became a book and its positive message of “belief, faith, and hope” is spread around the world.
For other books about refugees and migration for children: