Syria Crisis: From Trauma to Creativity
“I was unable to speak to anyone for four months when we first fled to Jordan, not even my own family,” says Aya, 17-year-old Syrian girl. Aya is one of 22 Syrian, Iraqi and Palestinian girls and boys who rehearsed for a theater play, titled Wa Yabqa Al Amal, which means “Hope Remains,“ that they presented on World Refugee Day. The children themselves wrote the play, designed and decorated the stage and did all the acting. The play is about how much the refugee children miss their homelands and how important it is for the children to go to school and continue their education.
“Many bombings happened in our area, a lot of girls were kidnapped, then our house was bombed. My parents were afraid for my sisters, brothers and me, so we had to flee from Syria to Jordan about two years ago,” says Aya, “Nothing is as horrible as war is. When we arrived in Jordan I had lost trust in everyone. I refused to talk to anyone, not even to my own family. But starting from last summer I started doing activities with CARE during the holidays and on weekends. I learned computer skills, and now I am participating in this theater play that we all wrote and directed.” The play is part of CARE’s psychosocial program for Syrian refugees in Jordan.
“Aya used to be passive, distracted and anti-social,” explains Mohammed al A’adam from CARE, who has trained the children. “On the first day her mother accompanied her and told me how introverted she had become. However, throughout the trainings and the activities she has done with CARE, Aya has become very social and creative. She came up with a lot of the ideas we used for the play.”
“My family says I have changed a lot since I joined CARE’s activities,” says Aya. “Now I laugh, I tell jokes, I enjoy my time with everyone, all are things that were gone from my personality for a while.” Aya wants to practice what she learned in her future life. “I want to become an actress or a radio presenter when I go back to Syria,” says Aya.
Mahmoud Shabeeb, Regional Communications Officer for the Syria Crisis