Children Overcoming Conflict and Displacement
Through the Arts
Topic 1: Our Root
It is the historical migration route of Jingpaw Ehnicity (including nowadays Kachin from Myanmar, Jingpo from China and Singphone from India). From this route, we can clearly see that Kachin, Jingpo and Singphone people share the same historical and cultural roots and origin. It is to discuss with children who they are and where they are originally from. And it is always important to know who we are and where our root is.
Topic 2: The Homeland I Remember
As we know, both the children from the IDP camps of Laiza and the children from the village schools on the China side have been displaced due to different causes. The Chinese Jingpo children were displaced by the national development project, by the modernization process, by the land expropriation, etc. The Kachin children were displaced by the military conflicts. None of these children is staying in their own original homeland, and they are all waiting to return to their homeland some day. Therefore, it is important to keep the hope of going home and to remember what their own homeland looks like, smells like, “tastes” like and feels like… That is why we try to paint and show the details of the homeland that can really touch everyone’s heart, every single person who has his/her own homeland. Yes the first 2 topics are to explore their origins and to encourage the kids to reflect the memories of their home , lifes of families and neighbours , lives in the villages including schoolings and wandering in nature and wild etc.
Topic 3: What Happened?
Why the children are not and can not live in their own homeland? Why? What happened? With these questions, natually we will want to know what exactly happened that displaced the children from their homeland. Yes this is to encourage and reflect the experience of the troubles and difficulties, threats and fears and hard memories that are still in the children’s life now. Media and the reports from the IDP camps already said a lot about what happened. We hear about and see what happened in the children’s life. However, we don’t easily hear and feel “what happened in these children’s heart”. It must be powerful to say it out. And it must be a great and important lesson for the society and the world.
Topic 4: I miss you, but you are no longer here.
Being alive, we keep losing important things. It is the same for every one. The children lost even more during their extreme experiences. Among all that we lost, time and life are the most hurting part. Time can never be found back. Life of us and life of the persons we love can never be made up. No matter what we do, it can never help to heal the pain from losing the person we love. So this part is to encourage the children to see and face the fact of losing their beloved persons. Only when we face and accept the loss, we will be able to really heal our own heart, rebuild the strengths and move forward.
Topic 5: Be with yourself, at least.
From the Root in the first topic to the loss of the beloved person in the fourth topic, we talk a lot about what happened in the children’s life. All the things that happened show the difficult situation. However, the more difficult, the more children need to build strength for themselves because no one can really help to change the difficult situation except the children themselves. Therefore, it is very important for the children to stay with themselves, to find back confidence, hope and courage for themselves. No matter what happened and how much we lost, at least, we can not lose ourselves and we have to be with ourselves.
Topic 6: The future – I hope
to see (/to hear/to feel…)