There is a war going on in Ukraine, escaping from it, about 88 thousand Ukrainians have found themselves in the hospitable Bulgaria. The significant part of these people have lost their homes, relatives and loved ones, jobs, comfortable living and usual way of life, health, sense of security and stability.
For most of these people, the state of stress and anxiety has become permanent. Many of them have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Unfortunately, there are even cases of suicide attempts. This prevents them from finding the strength to move forward, make decisions, come out of the victim mentality state, socialize and adapt in Bulgaria, look for work here and build their lives.
Also, along with their parents, as migrants, children also came to Bulgaria, including those with special needs (the so-called "sun children"), who are in more need of support, help to adapt in a foreign country, to a foreign language and school, as they are far from home and from their usual environment.
The Ukrainian migrants are also helped by Russian-Ukrainian speaking volunteers from various public organizations, crisis centers in the Burgas region (the volunteer center in Pomorie - 7 people, volunteers from the public organization "Ukrainian Home" - 8 people, the crisis centers in Burgas - 4 people). These people face a large number of Ukrainians who have experienced psychological trauma due to the war, they provide them with emotional, informational, psychological support. They also experience the "burnout" syndrome at work. Therefore, in order to effectively help the migrants, they also need support and resource recovery, negative emotion coping skills and non-violent communication skills.
Therefore, psychological support and development are very important to all these people.
Our idea/mission is:
Our organization "Open Bulgaria" with the support of the Ukrainian public organization "Mediation and Dialogue Agency of Chernivtsi Region" offers the Ukrainian migrants (adults, children) and volunteers to conduct support, development and creativity groups that will allow them:
- to share their stories and experiences;
- to be and to communicate in the Ukrainian community;
- to gain experience in overcoming the crisis situations related to the war in Ukraine;
- to receive support;
- to find their supporting points;
- to recover the resources;
- to stabilize their emotional state by using art practices;
- to develop their creative potential;
- to acquire new creative skills;
- to find answers to the current issues that prevent moving forward;
- to learn to live in the present conditions;
- to increase their life-resilience;
- to work with the theme of adaptation and migration;
- to improve the quality of their lives.
What we did:
1) We conducted a survey among the Ukrainian migrants living in the Burgas region, which survey demonstrated the relevance and importance of the psychological support for them by the Ukrainian specialists.
2) Also for the Independence Day of Ukraine from 20 to 26 August we held several free events - support groups with the participation of a Ukrainian psychologist, an art therapist for the Ukrainian migrants and volunteers from the crisis/volunteer centers in the Burgas region (Burgas, Pomorie, Sunny Beach), which events covered a total of 38 people, including children. These meetings demonstrated the need of the participants for further conduct of such initiatives, the need of the Ukrainians for support, stabilization of the emotional state, the resource state creation, self-development. All participants were very appreciative of these meetings.
3) We created a Viber group, a Telegram channel, and a Telegram chat for communication with the support group members, event notifications and feedback.
4) We continue to hold free master classes for the migrants from Ukraine in the Burgas region. Our goal is to help the Ukrainian migrants (adults and children), the volunteers in the Burgas region, to cope with the stress of the war, to improve their emotional and psychological state, to help them come out of the victim mentality state, to help them adapt and integrate in Bulgaria.
We invite you to join our team personally or to provide any possible donation or to help in arrangement of the mentioned events for support of ukrainian people who were forced to move to Bulgaria due to well-known circumstances.
All your support will be highly appreciated, thank you!