“Now my daughter has a better ability to communicate, start conversations, and engage with the community.” — Father of SuperGirls Participant at CRP
In a loud classroom, many girls will shy away from speaking up. With help from FAWCO, Collateral Repair Project created the SuperGirls to empower and focus on elementary-aged refugee girls at a key time in their development. This program helps girls express themselves and engage with the people and world around them. SuperGirls began in late 2017. There are two age groups (upper and lower elementary ages) that each meet twice per week. The girls who attend learn how to process emotion and develop healthy coping mechanisms. The girls learn important skills such as self-awareness and speaking out.
The girls enjoy hands-on activities such as building 3D homes or playing with blocks, which develop fine motor skills and increase brain activity. Watched over by volunteers, the girls talk about their feelings and problems.
Trauma manifests in children in a variety of ways. Some of these ways include behavioral issues and aversion to change. Kids who have gone through trauma may distrust adults, including parents and teachers. They often have trouble paying attention They lose faith in systems, the future, and even their own culture. The SuperGirls program helps alleviate stress by providing a community and shows the girls that they are not alone in this struggle. Under the guidance of our education consultant, Beryl Cheal, CRP developed a curriculum to address the issues refugee girls face. They include things learning traditional greetings and songs to build confidence. Volunteers include rules-based games where the rules are the same every time so that certainty is more assured, and games where there are no winners and losers. Many things may still be uncertain in these girls’ lives but SuperGirls will continue to provide structure and stability.