Despite trauma and loss in the world, it is possible to find peace within yourself – as this story about refugees, parents and carers, resilience, self-care, and the volcano of emotion demonstrates. — By Keri Ahmet.
“Earlier this year we let you know that Quest made a successful application to the Cabra Vale Diggers Club for a grant to deliver self-care and resilience workshops to parents, carers and refugees in the Fairfield area. So far, we have held several of these workshops with many more lined up for 2018.
I’d like to tell you about the most recent one that was presented by Quest facilitator, Margie Braunstein. I tagged along to help.
Margie knew the participants would probably only speak Arabic so she boned up on the language – she’s fluent in at least a dozen words – adjusted her slides accordingly, and was ready to go.
We set the room up and the interpreter, Reem and 30 participants arrived.
Reem was a powerhouse of dramatic interpretation. When Margie talked about the Volcano of Emotions, Reem threw herself on the ground and exploded up into the air, volcano style, to the delight of everyone. Her face was a theatre of expression as she demonstrated crying, laughing, and feeling sad and tired. At the end of the workshop, Reem was understandably exhausted while the participants were rested, relaxed and happy. And I’m sure Margie and I were both fluent in Arabic by then as both she and I were nodding enthusiastically at Reem’s interpretation as though we knew exactly what she was saying.
While Reem made the workshop fun for participants, by the end of the day I could see they understood the message and the importance of self-care.
Reem is a former refugee. She has only been in the country for 7 years and was telling me how she hates balloons because she knows when they burst she’ll be reminded of the sound of the bombs she heard exploding in Iraq and their devastating impact on the community and on the many people she knew.
Being a part of these workshops is, for me, a humbling experience. I can’t imagine how it must feel to flee the country of my birth, leaving behind family and friends, my home and everything I own and arriving in a country where I don’t even have the words to buy a loaf of bread or a carton of milk.
It’s an honour to have a small role in helping to demonstrate that despite trauma and loss in the world, it is possible to find peace within yourself.”
If you would like Quest to deliver a self-care and resilience workshop for your organisation, call 1300-941-488.
If you have ever reacted in a way that is out of proportion to the stimulus of your anger or if you have had trauma in your life, Quest for Life’s Healing Your Life or Moving Beyond Trauma programs can help. View Residential Programs