West African Psychosocial Support in the Classroom Consultancy

Mimosa Blossom

Lidra Remacka, SF Canada Member recently completed a nine-week, Dakar-based consultancy on behalf of the UNICEF Western and Central Africa Regional Office (WCARO) aimed at embedding psychosocial support for children living in situations of emergency and crisis into classroom practice. The consultancy involved facilitating a five-day training program for teachers in Nigeria and Niger and the concomitant development and refinement of a prototype manual for teacher training on how to create a climate and context of psychosocial support through the use of active education. Building learning from each training experience was part of the process. The manual addresses the needs of children aged 3 to 17 in crisis contexts.

The training program and manual aim to:

  • Reinforce and promote the provision of psychosocial support within daily teaching practice by means of integration within participatory pedagogies
  • Identify potential healing opportunities, applications and challenges with recommendations for various contexts
  • Empower and strengthen the teacher’s role as agent and advocate of positive change
  • Create a healing classroom environment for both students and teachers

Each training day is devoted to a particular module, the modules being: Introduction to Participatory Psychosocial Activities; Building Resilience Through Cooperation; Future Thinking; The Healing Classroom; Learning by Playing.

Lidra’s final consultancy report was delivered to WCARO on 2 September 2015.


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