|Kosovo Crisis||CARITAS RESPONDS TO REFUGEE CHILDREN'S NEEDS|
Kosovar refugee children have been deprived of regular schooling since they have left their homes.
The Catholic charity Caritas has responded by establishing a new Parent School Partnership Project in Macedonia, for schools in areas with high concentrations of refugees. The program provides refugee children with a session each day at a primary school in Poroj, near Tetovo. Their teachers are also refugees.
Meanwhile, Caritas Australia is directly supporting the work of the International Catholic Migration Commission (ICMC) in Albania. The ICMC is providing social services for the most vulnerable, with a particular focus on children, youth, women and the elderly in Caritas managed camps and centres.
Catholic Relief Services (CRS), the US Caritas affiliate, organised an exhibition of the drawings of Kosovar children at a community centre in the Albanian capital Tirana. Aside from fostering contact between parents, teachers and children, the exhibition identified children with symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Psychologists examined the drawings and identified children who appeared to have been particularly traumatised, for further attention.
The treatment of trauma is crucial for adults and children. Amongst the refugee community, professionals, doctors, nurses and teachers have been identified and have attended a seminar focussing on dealing with PTSD. These individuals will be able to help those in their community suffering from this condition.
Caritas 12:05pm 3/6/99