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Caregiving Podcast

A multiple-stage response providing practical guidance and coping mechanisms for caregivers and their children in vulnerable communities.

Photo of Danielle De La Fuente
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Building off expertise working with children affected by crisis, the COVID-19 Response Consortium including Amal Alliance, Karanga, Learning in Times of Crisis: Essence of Learning, Qatar Foundational International, Salzburg Global Seminar, and experts, employs their complementary strengths to provide practical support for the children and caregivers through a comprehensive approach. 

Given the uncertainty, fear, and anxiety that COVID-19 has produced, in April we responded virtually through a podcast series intended for vulnerable communities, including refugees and migrants. The series addresses the needs of children during the COVID-19 pandemic by providing simple, but meaningful activities that reinforce emotional wellbeing. The podcasts give caregivers daily activities to enhance self-resilience and explore possibilities to support themselves and children of all age groups and learning stages. Activities and games are designed to require no materials, and touch on topics such as hygiene, empathy, tolerance, patience, and healthy expression. Worksheets were developed to compliment the podcasts with easy to follow examples of activities. Both were distributed via Whatsapp, but can also be found on SoundCloud & MixCloud (depending on country of location).  

Due to the lack of resources so many children are experiencing, the guidance provided can aid in promoting resilience in families to help mitigate more long term ramifications. They have been distributed to the communities we serve in Greece & Lebanon, but have been distributed worldwide across 17 different platforms that include that of INEE, Education Above All, Salzburg Global Seminar global fellows, etc. They are available in 4 languages at the moment: Arabic, French, Spanish, and English.

We require a strategic funding partner to continue production of new episodes, and technological partners to reach the more vulnerable populations that can benefit from such programming. Please note our collective mission is to prioritize child protection above all and immediate support during times of crisis. 

What part(s) of the pre-COVID school system do you wish to leave in the past? Why?

The notion that school's sole focus should be on academic performance is outdated. In an ideal world, it would be replaced with a more holistic model that includes essential skills that can be taught through social emotional learning and learning through play. Given that children worldwide have now experienced some element of trauma from this COVID pandemic, psychosocial support is an even more critical component to re-engaging the learner. There is no health without good mental health, and no learning without emotional wellbeing. Perhaps this pandemic can serve as the launching point to a more holistic educational approach that prioritizes wellbeing.

Tell us a little bit about yourself and what inspired you to share this idea.

The Amal Alliance, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) dedicated to empowering displaced and disenfranchised children through 4 pillars of support: 1) psychosocial support, 2) social-emotional learning, 3) early childhood development, and 4) peacebuilding. Our programming was named by UNHCR as one of the “most promising holistic practices” at the Global Refugee Forum in Geneva, as our holistic approach stimulates the mind and body through education and integration programs that focus on social emotional learning and address trauma at its root cause. These programs allow children to find inner strength and resilience despite their challenging circumstances. 

We see children as powerful agents of change; thus, we strive to promote social cohesion and introduce peace education in their most formative years. For more information, please visit: www.amalalliance.org

What region are you located in?

  • North America

Where are you located?

We are headquartered in New York City; however, we serve communities globally.

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Spam
Photo of Rachel Siegel
Team

I am straight-up APPLAUDING over here, Emmanuel Montesa and Danielle De La Fuente ! What powerful, essential, human-centered work you are doing! SO, SO IMPRESSED! I just finished a graduate course on trauma/social-emotional development and many of the resources we studied highlighted exactly what your organization is doing - providing resilience-based skill practice to multi-generations. I would love to see examples of a daily lesson that was provided to your families - is that on your website? Also, I'm curious - do you have specific strategies for obtaining feedback from caregivers & children about the resources you've provided during the pandemic?

Thank you for posting. Truly inspirational!

Spam
Photo of Danielle De La Fuente
Team

Thank you so much Rachel Siegel for the very kind words! What an amazing topic to cover in your graduate work, would love to learn more. We have the podcasts on the website here: https://www.amalalliance.org/news Each podcast covers a specific "lesson" -- for instance, Connecting to others, emotions & feelings, hope & dreams, etc. Since these are more of a conversational/virtual approach to be sent during the pandemic, we don't have a lesson plan per say, but rather transcripts. I can share with you our curriculum sneak peek if you send me your email.

In terms of strategies for obtaining feedback, this is a pain point. We assumed it would be hard to get a lot of feedback, aside from the families we already serve. Especially since, many of our distribution partners have listed them to their websites, newsletters, and other platforms; making it very hard to track. The feedback we have received from the families has been all positive thus far. They find it very helpful - especially the games - and have asked if there will be more episodes. Our organizational parents that also receive feedback from caregivers find it very practical and well adapted/localized to the various cultures.