Kindergarten for asylum children
All asylum children can attend kindergarten from the age of three to the age of five. It is crucial for the well-being of the families to have a safe and nice place where the children can play and enjoy themselves. After a period of unpredictability, the children need to be in safe, familiar surroundings, and parents should be able to attend tuition, take part in work experience or go to necessary interviews with the authorities, with peace of mind.
The kindergartens are designed like all other kindergartens, with children’s furniture and drawings on the walls.
The kindergarten teachers use methods that have been developed on the basis of experience with children in difficult life situations, and the teachers have many years of experience regarding the special needs of asylum children. One of the things that really matters is having a safe and predictable everyday life.
Kindergarten teachers help asylum children find joy again after traumas
In Red Cross kindergartens, extra focus is placed on security, familiarity, and rituals. The teachers therefore work according to the STROF model. STROF stands for: Structure, Talking with the child, Rituals, Organised activities and Parental co-operation. Put together, all these tools are a unique instrument for helping traumatised children. Children who show signs of mistrust and anxiety may for example rediscover their joy, pleasure and motivation by being allowed to play and express themselves in safe surroundings.
Just like in ordinary kindergartens, talks with the parents are an important part of the educational work. Therefore, regular talks are held with the parents, with the help of an interpreter, to discuss the welfare of the child.
The kindergartens are open 25 hours a week. Local authorities supervise kindergartens, recreational clubs and schools in the asylum centres.