Bringing dignity, love and truth into the hopelessness of lives that are traumatized by exploitation and abuse.
Justice and Hope provides Counselling for survivors at the Protection Home run by the government. Since August 2013, years J&H have counselled over 179 Survivors who have been admitted to the home for protection after being trafficked or abused or abandoned or run away or orphaned or found begging or pregnant minors or child marriage.
A combination of Art therapy, cognitive therapy, behavior modification, insight oriented therapy, coping methods, solution focused therapy, client-centered therapy, etc. are used by J&H to counsel.
From August 2013, Justice and Hope has been providing counselling for survivors at the Government Home. Till date, 213 girls who have been trafficked, abused, abandoned, orphaned, beggars, pregnant teenagers, child brides, runaways etc. have benefited from this counselling through 383 formal sessions and additional informal sessions. Many girls who wanted to give up on life now have a small ray of hope instilled in their hearts. Our hearts still ache when we hear stories of abuse and abandonment, but it pushes us to work harder and give our best to make a difference in the lives of these precious children.
Therapy through Art sessions
Survivors struggle with negative thinking and resort to self-harm, thus Justice and Hope started activities that teach values, self-worth, dignity and significance of existence and keep them involved in fun activities so that they spend lesser time in their painful thoughts and allow healing.
Currently 50% of the staff of Justice and Hope are survivors themselves but were able to overcome their past and thrive in the community. When they were in the protection homes, they recollect how the art therapy positively influenced them and thus knows of its importance.
Research shows that art activities help develop the brain’s capacity in early childhood. Art engages a child’s senses in open-ended play and supports the development of cognitive, social-emotional and multi-sensory skills. Children express how they feel and think about the world through their art, which gives them a way to express the feelings and ideas that they can’t put into words. In the above picture, the child drew two contrasting masks – one showing her inner feelings, and one showing how others perceive her, both contrasting each other. Art sessions also help the counselors identify the children that require immediate counselling.
Movie days and Fun days are held on special occasions or times other than the regular counseling sessions. They are recreational but focused on teaching values such as respecting elders, working as a team, friendship, standing up for justice, not giving up, etc.
Fun is a luxury in the monotonous life within the four walls of their protection home. Face painting, henna art, nail painting, bubbles, a games section and a spot for the girls to dance or showcase their creativity.
The staff and volunteers spent a day turning the Girls Protection Home into a vibrant and beautiful place, decorated in an array of colours and filled with music. The girls’ faces lit up as they danced, played games, dabbled in nail art, henna and bubbles and interacted with the staff and volunteers.
When some of the children broke down crying, remembering their past, the staff members were always there by their side. Having somebody they could open up to, or just be there for them, encouraging them, brought back the sparkle in their eyes and they were able to enjoy the rest of the day.