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The Blue Marists



Why Resilience in Aleppo?

22/10/2018: Syria

Thanks to the support of BICE, a training session was held from 26 to 29 September for a number Tutors of resilience with the Blue Marists of Aleppo (Syria). Verónica Hurtubia, the specialist from the Catholic University of Milan in charge of the lectures, recounts her experience for our benefit.


 "What most terrifies me is the silence of this place... the silence that only death can bring... " Leila's words are imprinted in my mind, as we go for a walk through the destruction of the old market of Aleppo. Pain, forgetfulness, destruction, parks that have become cemeteries, children without identity, locked in the houses where they were born and where they have grown up to the sound of the bombs that today can still be heard in the city. These could be the elements of a postcard from the Aleppo of today.  

However, under the wreckage a new life begins to be born anew, thanks to the energy and anger of a town wishing to move ahead without bitterness. A town working to cure its wounds by turning the pain into resilience.  

In spite of the horror that war brings, the testimonies of 26 tutors who followed the Tutors of Resilience Course in the Blue Marists' Centre, are a treasure that teaches us love, commitment and loyalty towards our fellow human beings.  

The formation beganfrom the personal experiences of the tutors involved in the problems of the children. This is necessary to build strategies for the promotion of resilience in the children who attend the Blue Marists' Centre.  

These were 4 days of intense formation where we dealt with the concept of resilience from a new perspective. An active and positive focus that is not limited to forgetting the bad moments but rather highlighting the transformation of the pain and looking to the future. It is not enough to think that the war has ended and that daily life can be the same as before the first bomb.  

And so it was in this way that we moved forward in this adventure of resilience which began one year ago when a group of Tutors of the Blue Marists journeyed to the Lebanon (The Fratelli Project) in order to follow an introductory course dealing with resilience. At the moment, the collaboration between Blue Marists and the Fratelli Project continues with programmes on education and resilience, focused on children of pre-school and primary age.  

This methodology made it possible for the tutors to re-discover their own capabilities, to be able to dream again, to share their desire to create a museum of memory, to grow stronger as a group and to recognize the value of community, beyond religion. All of these are fruits left to us by resilience, they are seeds that we must continue cultivating, both the tutors, the children and the youth. Thank you to all the partners who have made this mission possible."

Besides Aleppo and Lebanon, other resilience training sessions are being developed in Andalusia (Spain) and Haiti.  

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