Our project is entering the fourth phase, with the purpose of solving children's fears, especially the fear of earthquakes and viral diseases, and preventing serious mental illnesses as a result. We are organizing a new group of workshops in the Zagreb City Libraries called 'Rico's paw of support' with the help of therapy dog Rico and psychologist. At each workshop, 25 children will learn about their emotions in a fun way, because they are the key to understanding their own fears.
Behavioral disorders in school children caused by fears are becoming more common due to the modern way of life and especially due to the natural disasters so the task of us experts is to recognize certain symptoms of the disorder in a timely manner. According to researches, in Croatia, it has been established that only 37% of children with behavioral disorders are involved in extracurricular activities, although it has been scientifically proven that it has a major beneficial effect on them.
We will try to reduce an issue of fears within the children/animal interaction. Ten children with a strong sense of fear of earthquakes in Zagreb will be provided with free therapeutic riding lessons, and twenty children will have free education with dogs, in order to strengthen their self-confidence and self-consciousness with an emphasis on animal assisted therapy. In this way, we will increase the participation of children in extracurricular activities by 17% of their current status.
After conducted research, before and after the completion of the project, the results of the research on 30 children, the conducted training and the conclusions reached will be applicable to all school institutions in Croatia. The adopted modalities of working with children who have excessive fears, caused by external circumstances, such as earthquake or unique disruptions caused by corona virus which could not have been foreseen before, will be applied and tenable in the next project cycle.
This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).