The 1st training took place from 7th to 11th August 2017 in Arua district in Northern Uganda. The training was attended by 34 refugee pastors from Rhino, Bidi Bidi and Moyo refugee camps. Ugandan pastors form Arua and missionaries at the YWAM Arua base were also invited bringing the total to 39 participants. The training was presented by three facilitators namely Louwrens and Theunis Scheepers from South Africa and Samuel Malish, a South Sudanese refugee trained by Petra Institute for Children Ministry.
This year ten (10) South Sudanese Pastors were selected from the group trained in 2017 to attend a week of Tutor training from 27 -31 August. They were trained to present two days from the “Entering the World of a Child” workshop as well as Matt. 18 on leadership. During the 2nd week (3-7 September) 23 Children’s workers from various denominations joined us and the 10 Pastors presented the first two days of training. Louwrens and Theunis Scheepers presented three days from the Walking with Wounded Children workshop focusing on trauma and the sandbox and toys as tool to journey with traumatised people. Joseph Oyet, a South Sudanese refugee, recently trained by Petra Institute for Children Ministry, joined the facilitation team during the second week.
INcontext International invited with Petra Institute for Children Ministry to conduct the trauma counseling training for South Sudanese refugees in Uganda.
Petra Institute paid 50% of the flight cost and the full visa fee of Theunis Scheepers. INcontext International raised the rest of the funds needed for the project and the East Africa INcontext team under leadership of the Director, Aron Mwasile provided the necessary logistical support before, during and after the training.
This year the training was held in the Rhino Refugee Camp, Ofua 3 section. The trainers from Petra Institute for Children Ministry and the Incontext – team from Tanzania providing the logistical support, lived among the refugees. This resulted in a considerable saving on operational expenses for INcontext International and we will look at doing the same in the future.
- During the first week we decided to focus on elements from the following training material: “Advocacy” – workshop, Foundational Children Ministry on entering the world of a child. We prepared ten (10) pastors to present two (2) days from the Foundational Children Ministry on entering the world of a child to children workers.
- During the second week the ten (10) pastors presented the 1st two days of training from the Foundational Children Ministry on entering the world of a child to twenty three (23) Children workers. The next three days Louwrens and Theunis Scheepers facilitated material from the Walking with Wounded Children Workshop using the ten (10) pastors trained during the first week as co-facilitators.
We appreciated the presence and assistance of Joseph Oyet during the second week. He was mostly observing during the sessions, and he made valuable contributions during reflection time setting a good example to the other facilitators-in-training.
The facilitators – in -training were challenged on their view of their ministry and their attitude towards children in their communities. The message from Mat 18:1-4 took root in many hearts and this was evident in the way they presented the content and process during practice. We heard testimonies from 2 participants that they engaged for the first time in months with their small children due to the knowledge they gained in the training sessions.
We believe that they have grown in their knowledge and that they are able to apply the knowledge to their own lives and context. This was evident in the way they presented the sections they were responsible for and in their participation as group leaders during other sessions. It was also evident in the way that they described their own trauma and their experience in the past in trying to deal with it.
They were challenged to set an example to the children workers they trained during the first two days of the second week.
They performed very well in presenting the first two days. These facilitators-in training showed no hesitation in engaging with families and children in the community when they were sent out, and they set a good example for the children workers they trained.
They have grown a lot in their active listening skills. Most of them really grasped the skill and applied it well. Most of them have shown a willingness and positive intent to continue to work on this skill.
The joy expressed on the faces of the participants and the children during 1-1 games, the board game and the sandbox was evidence that good relationships were established.
This was the 2nd step in a process to identify and develop tutors that can continue to present this training in the future. After discussions between the INcontext East Africa Director, the 10 facilitators-in-training and the facilitators representing Petra Institute for Children Ministry we propose the following as next steps:
- Samuel Malish and Joseph Oyet will do follow up trips to the camps to meet the 10 facilitators-in-training. They will use as many of them as possible when they do the “Foundational Children Ministry on entering the world of a child” in the refugee camps.
- To have a follow up training for the 10 facilitators-in-training within the next 12 months. The goal is to prepare them to present 5-days of training, including the material from the Walking with Wounded Children workshop. The training may be conducted for 12 days:
- One day to re-visit the training in the Foundational Children Ministry on entering the world of a child.
- Three days of preparing the facilitators-in-training to facilitate material from the Walking with Wounded Children Workshop.
- Three days for the facilitators-in-training to practice and present the material to the trainers, and
- Five days to present two days from the Foundational Children Ministry on entering the world of a child and three days to present material from the Walking with Wounded Children Workshop to new participants.