OVERCOMING TRAUMA, FINDING HOPE
Many children face psychological or social obstacles that sometimes get the better of them and hold them back in life
Making a Hero Book in a safe space, amongst people they know and trust, helps children find ways to gain power over such 'monsters'
Children are invited to share some of their inner world and life story through a series of drawing and autobiographical storytelling exercises
Telling and re-telling their story, each child becomes author, illustrator, main character and HERO of their own story
More than just storytelling, making a Hero Book strengthens wellbeing and circles of support around the child as they develop tricks and tactics to gain power over their ‘monster’
At the end of the process, each child has a self-made, illustrated storybook; a kind of solution-focused mission statement that documents and reinforces their strengths and skills
A new generation of HEROES, survivors, active citizens, solution-finders.
"In my family is my grandma, then my dad but I don't know where he is. My mother passed away when I was a little boy of 4 years old. My aunt cares for me and looks after me.
"When this bad feeling gets hold of me, I want to sit on one side or sleep. I can't talk. Then I cry.
"My Hero Book helped me work out some tricks and tactics to beat my problems, like going to my aunt who doesn't shout at me and who is gentle. Or go to the field and play soccer"
... because I’m fun and energetic and I overcame naughtiness and my sore heart
"I’m going to make a difference by becoming an undercover policeman.”
Real heroes need real problems to overcome. They also need community action and support. Sharing his problems with other kids at MAD helped Ebenezer feel more positive about himself and more hopeful for the future.
"My older brother Rodney always looked out for me. Then one day he was stabbed in the street for a few cents. He died, and I miss him a lot
"To make my heart less sore I play soccer and score goals or I come to MADaboutART
"I want to be a teacher or an artist and help other children take control of their futures."
MARIO, age 14
“My mother had a new partner and she didn’t want me to live with her anymore. It seemed like no-one even cared
"Making my Hero Book and sharing my story with other kids at MAD helped heal my hurt and I started to feel good about myself again.”
NTOMBI, age 10
3 MADaboutART youth ambassadors share their hero booking journeys in this short video from Maital Guttman