Refugee children who resettle in America face multiple traumatic stressors as they enter in a new culture and a new school system. Impact International’s education liaison program seeks to assist refugee children in developing a sense of resiliency so that they might acquire the skills which prepare them to adapt to change and negotiate the demands of their new American culture. Refugee children carry the lingering effects of growing up in an environment which was unsafe, unstable, and disrupted. The task they are given to balance the culture of their country of origin with that of their new culture is challenging and traumatic. Once a refugee child arrives in America from the trauma of war, they experience continued separation from loved ones, uncertainty of the whereabouts of family members or friends left behind, racial/ethnic/religious discrimination from their new community, poverty, potential reports of bad news from their country of origin, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, depression and possibly other anxiety disorders. Also, since children/teens are still developing, they continue to have all of the challenges of pre-adolescence and adolescence multiplied and made more difficult by their trauma. Impact International’s education liaison program seeks to encourage and support the refugee children by fostering an atmosphere of safety, inclusion, and belonging while providing caring adult role models as mentors or tutors to help the refugee children succeed in their new American school.
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