This July, we welcomed 34 participants from 12 countries, all of whom lost a family member due to terrorism, violent extremism or war, to the first virtual session of Project COMMON BOND. While the format of the program may have been a little different, the impact was the same. It was encouraging to see these young adults adapt to the virtual environment so quickly and continue to form lifelong friendships and deep bonds the same as they would in our traditional in-person setting.
When the laptops opened each morning (or afternoon or evening, depending on which part of the world you’re from), so did the hearts and minds of each participant. Everyone came with a willingness to share, listen and express emotions in a safe place.
The week was filled with a variety of workshops involving peace, conflict, culture and diversity, all with the goal of preparing our participants to be peacebuilders and agents of change in their home communities. Our most memorable class was public speaking, which encouraged storytelling and self-expression in the form of poetry and other creative outlets. Participants were able to access a sense of freedom and joy while building bonds and relating to one another.
All of us at Tuesday’s Children are proud to call these individuals members of our community and look forward to the bright futures that await them. While they may have suffered in the past, their willingness to tell their stories, and ability to adapt in these strange times and still form friendships, proves just how resilient they are.
CLICK HERE to learn more about Project COMMON BOND.