The Lebanese Center for Human Rights (CLDH) is a local non-profit, non-partisan Lebanese human rights organization in Beirut that was established by the Franco-Lebanese Movement SOLIDA (Support for Lebanese Detained Arbitrarily) in 2006. SOLIDA has been active since 1996 in the struggle against arbitrary detention, enforced disappearance and the impunity of those perpetrating gross human violations.

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October 22, 2016

The Daily Star- IOM offers therapy for Syrian refugee kids, October 22 , 2016

SIDON, Lebanon: Holding artificial wings, 13-year-old Mousaab Abbas couldn’t stop laughing as he ran with his friends pretending to fly. The activity, part of a program by the International Organization for Migration that offers psychological support for Syrian refugee children, was held just outside a refugee camp in Sidon’s Addousieh.
IOM is an intergovernmental organization that offers services and expertise to migrants, refugees, and the governments that host them.
Last month, it became a related organization of the United Nations.
Hailing from the Syrian town of Hama, Abbas recalled how he used to play in Syria before war broke out.
“Here we play football, and the best game is when we wear the wings, dance, and pretend to be flying,” he said. “Of course I don’t like weapons and I don’t play with them. They are for the adults.”
There are over 1 million Syrian refugees in Lebanon who fled their country after war erupted in 2011. Most are women and children.
As part of the IOM activities, children sit under trees and in a spacious square, listening to stories narrated by the organization’s volunteers.
“We work with 15 Syrian refugee camps. The number of children ranges between 50 and 150,” Ibrahim al-Dah from IOM said. “Their problems focus on violence and in turn we support them and provide instructions to them.”
The therapy program uses entertainment and sources of joy than can help lower the burden on children and take their minds off memories of war. “Slowly we can overcome the effects of war and displacement that have left an impact on them,” Dah explained.
The children aren’t given any toy weapons to play with as part of the project – rather, the focus is on nonviolent activities.
“Our focus today is on birds and peace. We put on artificial wings as part of an expressive dance on peace,” Dah added.
Nour Omar, 12, from the governorate of Homs, said she wanted peace and a normal childhood.
“I still have nightmares. I dream of my home. You can’t imagine how difficult displacement is,” she said. “We want peace, we want to live safely like the children of the world.”

Source & Link : The Daily Star

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