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Italy: Emergency Pedagogy Seminar for Earthquake Aid Workers

Central Italy has been hit by multiple destructive, strong earthquakes since the middle of last year. The earthquake in October 2016 was one of the strongest in the past decades. And it appears that there is still enough stored energy in the rock—the likelihood of further earthquakes in the coming months and years is very high.

Because the regions hit by the earthquakes could be evacuated in time, there were luckily no deaths this time. But once again many people lost their homes. Local aid workers are trying to support their relocation as much as possible. In order to advice them in the planning of activities for traumatised
children, a four-person team from emergency pedagogy was in the region from January 7th to 10th.

In addition to mission leader Bernd Ruf, an experiential pedagogue, an art therapist, and a kindergarten-pedagogue travelled to Tortoreto.
In lectures, the origin and development of traumata were discussed and how Waldorf and emergency pedagogy can help. In workshops the participants could then test out the methods themselves. Around 30 teachers, aid workers, and members of the civil defence took part in the seminar.
The knowledge about psychotraumatology and the learned techniques should now be used in three projects to help children, who were evacuated from the earthquake region, in processing their experiences.
Here the focus is on early intervention to prevent possible trauma related disorders and also on long-term support for affected persons.

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