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Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia School role in social reconstruction of the community in crisis by Lina Ќostarova Unkovska.

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Presentation on theme: "Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia School role in social reconstruction of the community in crisis by Lina Ќostarova Unkovska."— Presentation transcript:

1 Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia School role in social reconstruction of the community in crisis by Lina Ќostarova Unkovska

2 Location, time, duration … Country – region (s): Republic of Macedonia - multiethnic post conflict community (city of Tetovo) & five other towns… Time: Project starts in a year after a severe interethnic conflict between the Albanian rebels and Macedonian armed forces - to end in 2006 Place: Seven (all) Tetovo’ elementary schools & five schools from The Macedonian Health Promoting Schools Network, with more schools joining the project

3 Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia Research - intervention questions School role in social reconstruction of the community in crisis 1.What is going on in a community of prolonged crisis? contextual /field conditions/ level 2.Where to start to stop the deteriorating processes imposed by the crisis? Could it be the school? capacity /potentials/ level 3.How can the school community activate development towards positive community change? resiliency & competency for action level

4 Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia Immediate individual' versus community' response to community crisis 1. What is going on in a community of prolonged crisis? Individual in crisis ConsolidatePhysiological: Basic needs adjustment Behavioral: Pro-active, playful, alert, repetitive, regressive, avoiding, isolative, passive, withdrawn etc Cognitive: Selective, negating, idealizing, confabulating, symbolizing… Emotional: numb, over-controlling, impulsive aggressive Community in crisis Conflicting /disorganized Threatening life conditions Threatening life conditions Old patterns’ falling apart Old patterns’ falling apart Lack of valid information Lack of valid information Lack of guidance and relevant decision making Lack of guidance and relevant decision making New overwhelming events New overwhelming events Lack of trust, collaboration and support Lack of trust, collaboration and support Catastrophic prediction etc. Catastrophic prediction etc.

5 Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia Individual versus Community Capacity in Prolonged Community Crisis 1. What is going on in a community of prolonged crisis? Individual level Physiological (show: endurance, increased capacities for survival, arousal, pro-active ) Cognitive (search for: structure, order, logic, understanding & meaning) Psycho-social (need for: safe and stable environment, support, belonging, recognition - identity) Community level Physiological (tense, risky, impulsive, unbalanced, disconnected etc.) Cognitive (disorganized, disoriented, confused, destructive,meaningless) Psycho-social (threatening and fearful ; mistrustful, lack of recognition; isolated, identity confusion (threatening and fearful ; mistrustful, lack of recognition; isolated, identity confusion)

6 Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia 1. What is going on in a community of prolonged crisis? Crisis as contradictory process of change Individual Pro-active - constructive Adult - Child Teacher - Pupil Parent - Child Community in crisis Pro-active -destructive Community (Unsafe, discriminative, poor – war zone, collective centers, multiethnic) School (Authoritarian, threatening, impoverished, chaotic) Family (Separation, divorce, abuse, neglect)

7 Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia Can it be the school? 2. Where to start to stop deteriorating processes ? Individual Adult & Child Parent & Child Community Unsafe, discriminatory, threatening, chaotic Family (separated; divorced; neglectful, abusive, manipulative, depressed) Why the school? It is a place of great potential - for learning and growth It represents all community members It offers a structure, sense of belonging, recognition, comparisons It provides a framework for regaining the lost control and meaning

8 Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia Creating new processes of change 3. How can the school change the vicious circle for the better and activate development …? Individual Adult & Child Parent & Child Teacher - Pupil - School restructuring the school community leadership – forming the crisis teams with shared responsibilities; inclusion of all school members with new roles and responsibilities, creating new school ethos - pupil –teacher participation in the HPS projects; continual support; school linking and networking Community New relationships, better informedness, community participation, leadership Family (unified, renewing parental roles and responsibility; sense of belonging, meaning, caring,)

9 Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia Deciding on conceptual framework … Is it a health promotion? 3. How can the school start stimulating development towards positive community change? Need or Right based Programs Democratic instead of Moralistic Development versus Intervention

10 Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia Need or Right Based Program ? Deciding on conceptual framework… determination of needs vary according to the situation, individual and environment address symptoms welfare, charity – short term provision /filling gaps/ voluntary – private initiative partial goals /as possible/ providing services basic human /children/ rights are universal /the same everywhere/ - public, moral and legal responsibility, duty address root causes legal entitlements, claims, equality, freedom - long term goals mandatory – political, moral all children (are entitled to ) empowering

11 Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia Democratic versus Moralistic approach Deciding on conceptual framework … Looking for potentials - not for deficits Conditions are subject to change - not the person, or behavior… Promotion instead of correction Active (interactive) versus passive (one sided, directed) Social-cultural instead of individualistic Holistic (all inclusive) versus exclusive /marginalization, labeling…/ Empowering not threatening

12 Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia Development versus Intervention Deciding on conceptual framework … What makes the difference ? Long - term processes of change … Open ended & Participatory … Playful and exciting … Structured and deliberated within limits… Socially - culturally embedded… Interactive and supportive, encouraging… Life long learning … resilience building… crisis anticipatory & uncertainty open…

13 Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia Health Promoting School in Crisis Community School role in social reconstruction of the community in crisis Field conditions – under continual change…  Community - daily incidents in the neighborhood  Schools – overcrowded, poor, neglected, powerless,  Teaching methods (contents) – traditional, didactic, moralistic, irrelevant  Teachers – afraid, overwhelmed, demotivated, threatened, underpaid, intolerant,  Parents – afraid, hurt, distrustful, angry  Children – traumatized, separated, isolated, marginalized

14 Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia Health Promoting School in Crisis Community - Aims School role in social reconstruction of the community in crisis Aim 1: Decrease the feeling of insecurity and mistrust among the school community members of different ethnic background, by encouraging pupils and teachers for joint participation in the school & community health promoting projects … Aim 2: Empowere schools for linking and networking with other school communities, and getting out of closed circles of self- destruction and isolation …

15 HP School Project Strategy  All schools’ active inclusion in the Project (new school & inter-schools organization & structure)  Continual training, consultation & support monitoring, interactive supervision & evaluation  Linking and networking of all kinds among teachers, pupils, children - adults, school – community (team building, group work, interschool collaboration) School role in social reconstruction of the community in crisis

16 Development Project Structure /interrelated/  Pre-phase – screening & understanding the field - preparation for change – 6 months  Research and vision phase - redefinition - new perceptions and images – 12 months  Action and change – empowerment - experience of participation in change – 12 months  Linking and networking – creating meanings - getting out of isolation - 18 months School role in social reconstruction of the community in crisis

17 Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia Children’s involvement in the project  Preparation - Building safe and stimulating micro- environments - Creating conditions for democratic participation and decision making  Five step /S-IVAC/ approach - towards increasing children’s self-confidence and competence for participation in change  School linking and networking School role in social reconstruction of the community in crisis

18 Examples of a safe micro-environment building  Class work  Project team work  Inter-schools activities  Multiethnic summer schools School role in social reconstruction of the community in crisis

19 What is a S/P- IVAC approach? It is a developmental strategy of involving children as active participants in the changes, through the following phases : S/P - Selection/Preparation I - Investigation V - Vision A – Action C – Change School role in social reconstruction of the community in crisis

20 Four phases of children’s participation  Selection/Preparation  Investigation  Vision  Action School role in social reconstruction of the community in crisis

21 School Linking & Networking - the way out  Linking and creating partnership between the schools of different regions /multiethnic with single-ethnic; rural with urban; local with distant; domestic with foreign/  Children and teachers interschool collaboration on joint health /community/ promoting projects  Involvement of the new IT as a tool for inter school communication, performing, learning & friendship building School role in social reconstruction of the community in crisis

22  Positive changes: in teachers’ new roles – ready to listen, assist and support pupils’ initiatives and actions … in pupils’ competences and commitment as well as in their new position in the schools – increasing participation, tolerance, responsibility & achievements… in school atmosphere - dynamic, visionary, caring…  Weaknesses: lack of linking with system institutions – absence of mechanisms of support and recognition for the schools, teachers and pupils; absence of monitoring and evaluation, and relevant policy decision making; critical absence of interest, or/and understanding for the processes of the school active role in health, social & educational change. From the evaluation School role in social reconstruction of the community in crisis

23 Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action - Skopje, R.Macedonia Project realization and support The Project was carried out in by the Center for Psychosocial and Crisis Action Skopje, R. Macedonia In collaboration with The Macedonian Bureau for Development of Education & With financial support from The Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation School role in social reconstruction of the community in crisis


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