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Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism

by International Coalition for the Eradication of Hunger and Abuse (ICEHA)
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism
Emotional Healing for Child Victims of Terrorism

Although the Nigerian government says it is making progress against Boko Haram, the deadliest terrorist organization in the world, attacks have recently escalated. Additionally, one of our psychologists was in a very serious accident due to dangerous driving conditions, and faces a long and painful rehabilitation.

In light of this as well as the recent kidnapping of more school girls by Boko Haram, we are temporarily suspending our Healing Through Art program until we are convinced our teams will be able to operate in safety. Some of our local volunteers are successfully getting some items of food through to some of our children, and will continue to assist with critically needed food and health programs as they can, under current circumstances.

We are grateful for your help, and will update you when we are able to deliver Healing Through Art again in safety.

Thank you so much! 

IDP children in Abuja await our distribution
IDP children in Abuja await our distribution

As informed and compassionate donors, you are likely aware that US service members were killed in Niger in the fight against terrorism. As a consequence of US immigration policies prejudicial against it, Chad had recently withdrawn their long-term and extremely valuable troops who have been extremely loyal to the fight against religious radicalism in the area. 

Since the withdrawal of Chad, Boko Haram attacks have increased in the area, and several Nigerian police and military members who served as our protection have been killed. Children who have become orphans at the hands of Boko Haram are even more vulnerable to recruitment by Boko Haram due to lack of life-sustaining resources. These young children, mostly girls, are increasingly becoming suicide bombers as an alternative to a painful death by starvation. 

Although the need for life sustaining food is critical in Nigeria, any funds spent at this time on such items is subject to theft and corrupt practices. ICEHA cannot assure the safety of our Nigerian team to deliver the items personally, so we are temporarily suspending our settlement visits until we have the funding necessary to move the children to safety and assure their health issues are addressed. 

We have established wonderful relationships with Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) in Lagos and Abuja, and continue to provide food, clothing and education as funding is available. We also continue to develop our Healing Through Art program to address evolving issues facing the vulnerable survivors of Boko Haram who face new challenges as they try to integrate into new communities. Fortunately, the rescue of many of the Chibok girls has instilled renewed and hope and enthusiasm in the IDP's as well as our staff and volunteers 

Our immediate goal is to raise $10,000 USD to move 30 orphans who will be cared for by IDPs in Lagos and Abuja, and to provide for their care. We also need to raise an additional $10,000 to purchase farm lands in the Lagos area so these previously professional farmers can again provide food for their communities. This is the most sustainable way to fight against hunger and abuse!

We thank you for your continued concern and support as we further our fight against terrorism by empowering victims and working to eliminate Boko Haram's recruitment pool.

IDP mom and children in Abuja await ICEHA food
IDP mom and children in Abuja await ICEHA food
IDP Clothing Distribution - October 2017
IDP Clothing Distribution - October 2017
First Shoes For This IDP Child
First Shoes For This IDP Child
IDP Children Help Sort & Distribute
IDP Children Help Sort & Distribute
The Newest ICEHA Family Member!
The Newest ICEHA Family Member!

Links:

Sani - survivor and orphan of Boko Haram attacks.
Sani - survivor and orphan of Boko Haram attacks.

Friends,

I wish I could write to tell you that all of our children are doing great. I would love to write to tell you we have enough funds to provide HTA to even more children. How excited I would be to announce that Boko Haram is on its knees and the terror has ceased. Maybe next time I can write that note to you.

For today's update, I can simply tell you that the terrorist attacks continue, children continue to be used as suicide bombers, and our funds continue to run low.  This last quarter, we continued to spend finds on life saving treatments for critical patients, food and clothing to many displaced persons, and small HTA events with the neediest children. We continue to see great psycho-social healing results with those we have been able to reach with our programs. But the need continues to increase exponentially.

Some of our beneficiaries were squatting on private land and were recently removed. They have scattered and     we hear that many planned to return to Borno state. With Boko Haram conducting recent attacks, we are concerned for the well-being of the children and families we got to know and love. 

Our team has been able to maintain close contact with our other beneficiaries --- even receiving telephone calls and text messages regarding births in the settlement or other family celebrations. However, due to lack of funding, we have been unable to visit as frequently as we would like, or as often as the children need us. We hope this is a temporary lag and look forward to a prosperous next quarter. The children are depending upon us and we could really use your help. We immediately need to raise 12,000 USD for the next three months. Please forward this along to anyone you think might be interested in helping us to heal these children from the wounds of war.

Our hearts remain hopeful all of our beneficiaries are safe and that we can deliver better news to you next time!

Thanks for all you do,

Testing a Chibok Woman
Testing a Chibok Woman

Greetings friends,

The last several weeks have been a whirlwind of excitement due to the positive impact our program is having in survivors of Boko Haram. Thanks to you, the numbers of survivors we have been able to help has grown exponentially.

This past weekend we celebrated the return of 82 Chibok girls kidnapped from their school by Boko Haram over three years ago. Beneficiaries of our programs include the families of at least two of these newly returned girls, and we look forward to greeting them and helping with the emotional wounds of their kidnappings soon!

Since our last update, we have been called upon to respond when other larger, and better funded organizations refused to show up in emergency situations. Because of that, we have been fortunate enough to help save the lives of several women and children. Although the medical intervention was not our intention in carrying our HTA program, we know that healing must take place on many levels. A child dying of a disease must heal their physical condition in addition to their heal their psychosocial wounds. Here are the stories of two of our beneficiaries in the words of our team on the ground:

Maimuna Aliyu is a girl of 14yrs old,an internally displaced person(IDP) from Gwoza,Borno. Maimuna had been very ill and was not making any progress f or several weeks. ICEHA took her to the National hospital.  and discovered she had a collapsed lung, and a severe infection in her chest.  She tested negative for TB after specific tests for TB was carried out on her. She had a chest tube inserted to get the puss drained out of her chest. Her admission at the hospital lasted for a month and 9days. During this period,the drugs,medical bill and feeding was taken care of by ICEHA.Today,Maimuna is back home as a happy,healthy,grateful young girl. Unable to hide her joy, she said; "I want to be a nurse when I grow up so I can help others". Maimuna is also presently undergoing therapy to restore her lungs back to their normal shape and on precautionary TB medication on the advice of the medical personnel because the risk factors for TB are prevalent around her.

Abdullah Ali became orphaned at the hands of Boko Haram orphan and is caring for his younger brother. He followed our Executive Director as she took a laboring woman to the clinic.  There, he presented his medical records to her. Abdullah was very large and bloated, and his records indicated he was in kidney failure -- which had been untreated for two years. His condition was so advanced that we weren't sure that he w ould survive treatments, but we knew he deserved a fighting chance after surviving Boko Haram. 

After several weeks in the hospital, we are so leased that he has been released and his prognosis is very good. When he was admitted, he weighed 282 pounds, and his stomach measured 49 inches.  He now weighs 155 pounds and his stomach measures 35 inches. Abdullah has now become a devoted volunteer with ICEHA.

ICEHA also secured treatment for over 20 young women from Chibok who had been suffering from infections since they escaped Boko Haram three years ago, as well as emergency treatment for three young women who delivered babies. Unfortunately, one of the babies died due to undiagnosed malaria in the mother, but the other two babies survived difficult births and are thriving due to follow up by our team.

We are grateful to you for your unselfish commitment to these inspirational survivors! Together, we are literally saving lives! We need to raise an additional 3000 USD to cover the costs of all treatments pending, and we hope you will refer your friends to our GlobalGiving platform so they too can experience the joy of helping others. 

Thank you again!

Abdullah Before
Abdullah Before
Abdullah After
Abdullah After
Maimuna before
Maimuna before
Maimuna after
Maimuna after
One of our ICEHA babies and mom after delivery.
One of our ICEHA babies and mom after delivery.

Links:

A collaborative piece by children at Kuchiguro
A collaborative piece by children at Kuchiguro

March was an exceptional month for ICEHA!  We expanded our programs to 5 new locations where ICEHA is partnering with the survivors of Boko Haram to help over 6000 additional displaced children and their families in Abuja and Lagos.This expansion is mentoring and empowering IDP, and has been made possible because of your continued generosity. 

During our initial visits, we were met with high levels of skepticism and diustrust. It was heartbreaking to learn that other organizations with large revenue streams had visited and promised to help these IDPs, but that help either didn't materialize, or was delivered with much media fanfare with no follow up. In some cases, schools were built, but no teachers, books, or supplies were delivered. Tailoring was taught, but no sewing machines supplied. Building trust is critical to sustainable progress as well as receiving reports of possible recruitment ot infiltration by Boko Haram. Since our initial visits, we have built great working relationships with the residents of these settlements and are in frequent, sometimes daily, communication.

ICEHA has noticed cases extreme violence between young children during our programs. This is not unusual for children who have been victimized by terrorist acts. We continue to work with the children and their parents to design sustainable strategies for conflict resolution. We will continue to assess levels of PTSD and get professional therapists involved in the extreme cases. 

Attached to this report are  photos  and media coverage from our events last month. I hope you enjoy them. We are extremely grateful for your generosity and hope you feel compelled to continue your support to help stop the perpetuation of violence.

Thank you so much!

HTA singing with children at Wasa IDP settlement
HTA singing with children at Wasa IDP settlement
HTA with children at Waru settlement
HTA with children at Waru settlement
Henna artists discovering a new outlet for art
Henna artists discovering a new outlet for art
So many child survivors need our help
So many child survivors need our help
Stories of Boko Haram by  survivors at Durami
Stories of Boko Haram by survivors at Durami

Links:

 

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Organization Information

International Coalition for the Eradication of Hunger and Abuse (ICEHA)

Location: Reston, VA - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @ICEHAorg
International Coalition for the Eradication of Hunger and Abuse (ICEHA)
Carolyn Ronis
Project Leader:
Carolyn Ronis
Reston, VA United States

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