The escape out of crisis circumstances usually leads to children being unable to take toys from their otherwise ordinary daily lives. Instead, these children usually carry terrible experiences with them as luggage and are confronted with the severity of life far too early. Playing falls into the background and they have to grow up far too quickly.
Playing is crucial to the development of children because children discover, practice, and cement various developmental stages in basic ability, dexterity, and knowledge. These children need a place where they can be children again. The Spielmobil creates such a place and travels for this reason every day in a different shelter in the Rhein-Main region. So we are both fast and flexible if a shelter is close and the residents have moved. The Spielmobil travels everywhere around the cities of Frankfurt, Darmstadt, Wiesbaden, Mainz, and Hanau.
The Spielmobil currently travels to organized locations in Mainz, Wiesbaden, Darmstadt, and Frankfurt. We are now in conversation with shelters in Offenbach to start locations there are quickly as possible. Beyond that, there are interested shelters in the cities of Kronberg and Oberursel. As soon as we have a solid network
Our Spielmobil visits shelter homes in a regular cycle either weekly or biweekly. At present we are working on a fixed route planning.
Our regular stations are currently as follows:
Through the construction of a solid network of volunteers and team leaders, we would like to ensure that the Spielmobil is out on the ground every day in play stations in refugee shelters as soon as possible. We see this effort as our focus
Concretely, that means making fixed dates with regular rotations with different establishments. The advantage of these fixed rotations is the consistency and continuity in which the children can recognize these fixed “Spielmobil Days” so that they will clearly know when we are coming. The referenced appointments with fixed rotations will be kept.
There will also be special events according to the strength of the volunteer teams in addition to the fixed appointments. These special events include things such as summer parties in the region that are specifically organized for refugees.
Almost a third of those people who currently seek asylum in Germany consists of minors. Everyday life for these children is especially dreary and monotonous. They often live in one shared room with their entire families and have little possibility for playing or movement.
Through the joined possibility in the refugee accommodations these monotonous days can be changed. Spending free time together creates trust and allows social contact as well as relationships to be built as the positive course of integration continues. Encountering one another opens doors and removes prejudice. There is where the Spielmobil becomes a mobile offer that the various refugee accommodations can utilize to bring children of all ages together to play. The workers and helpers from the Spielmobil give the refugee children attention so that they can connect without the concern of cultural or language barriers. During the play stations, the children communicate with one another and with the Spielmobil helpers in different languages and they learn to overcome the fear of contact in their everyday lives.
Already children, who have to escape from crisis circumstances, often bring ugly experiences with them as their baggage rather than the toys that they should be carrying. As a result, they are confronted with the severity of life far too early. These children need a place that allows them to be children again. The Spielmobil wants to be this place for these refugee children. Playing is the best facilitation of motor skills, creativity, and thought processing for children. Light-hearted games ease some of the burden that the children carry in having to process through their traumatic experiences. It brings a piece of reality back into everyday life.
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