Statue Making to Explore Resilience

The street-connected children and the children who were formerly living on the streets have been actively involved in making statues of children on the street to explore resilience. A statue freezes you in a certain position and captures it for all time. As resilient people, we have to be flexible and not rigid like the statue – but we can use the statue to learn from. We can think about the mindset of that person in that very moment.

We started the statue making process by asking the children to demonstrate some of the common positions they associate with a child on the streets and then to choose the positions they thought were the most interesting.

The process involved twisting lots of wires to make the frame. In fact, the children all called the statues robots at that point as they were just metallic. After that came layers of paper mache and then finally paint and varnish. Then at the end, words of poetry and song lyrics from the children’s resilience songs were put on the clothes of the statues.

One of our statues is shabby in dress and one is smart to represent the fact that children on the streets can either be clean or dirty.

This is what Waiswa said: “We want to encourage children and people in the community facing difficult situations to seek support. Support seeking behavior is so important – sometimes we ignore people around us who can be helpful to us when we are stricken by adversity.”

The statue-making has been ongoing for a couple of weeks and they have almost completed it.

We are inviting people in the community, stakeholders, organisations and many others for a resilience art exhibition at Source Cafe on Main Street, Jinja, from 1st – 12th April 2017 to learn more about resilience through the statues and many other resilience art works that the children have been making to explore and foster resilience in people. We are also doing a special launch event in the evening of Friday 31st March where we will be very happy to be hosting the other resilience champions from Ecuador and Nepal as well as representation from the Consortium for Street Children.

Children’s participation is one of the core areas of our work at S.A.L.V.E International; we will give the children the opportunity to explain to the invited guests the meaning of the variety of the art they have been making. We expect many people to come for this art exhibition since the venue is well known and it’s central in Jinja city. We also expect that with this art exhibition we shall explore resilience in many people and therefore they will think about the message from the children and how they can adapt well in the face of adversity.

Alfred Ochaya

Before becoming Resilience Champion full time, Alfred was the Street Outreach and Drop-In Centre Manager at SALVE. He is a qualified social worker, and volunteers in his spare time for the Red Cross doing a variety of health training, including sexual health, for young people in the community. Alfred is a Street Invest global trainer with many years experience in hands-on street work and leading teams.

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