SOS Village – Healing the trauma of post-election violence

Healing the trauma of post-election violence


There are so many versions given regarding the genesis of post election violence in Kenya. It’s not apparently clear as to why so many people were killed, displaced from their homes and their houses torched! Nonetheless, through the mediation process a commission of enquiry has been established to dig deep into the root cause of the problem, to make recommendations and to reconcile the feuding parties.

SOS Children’s Village Eldoret is among the many organizations that were affected due to the post election violence. Staff and children from the SOS Hermann Gmeiner School witnessed all manner of violence committed. Children as well as teachers saw people being butchered, houses torched, and mass displacement and exodus to unknown destinations. These negative experiences have adversely affected the learning process at school: teachers, children and students are grossly traumatized. For this reason the Kenya national office, in conjunction with the Eldoret children’s village and the SOS Hermann Gmeiner School sponsored a post election workshop for the staff and children both from the community and the children’s village.

A counseling group was contracted to provide services to the traumatized members of the SOS fraternity. It was a one week exercise that emphasized practical aspects of healing. Children were given priority to draw pictures of things they had experienced after the elections. The violent drawings depicted the real trauma that had engulfed the school community. Children were given group therapy, and those who deserved specialized treatment got personal attention. At the end of the process most children seemed relieved of their burdens to some extent. Continue reading

Advertisements