During the months of September and October 2023 #MeRest partner organizations trainers developed and tested a format for the implementation of a narrative based workshop “MY RESILIENCE STORY” and visual-art workshop “EXPRESSING MY RESILIENCE”. The initiative was implemented in Lithuania, Italy, Greece and Romania and involved people particularly affected by the Covid-19 including elderly people, people with disabilities, people with mental health issues and health care professionals and both workshops were specifically aimed to support the development of participants’ confidence, sense of identity, self-awareness and self-esteem.
During 1st workshop participants were prompted to elicit reflective stories about moments of daily experience which have challenged them deeply in the time of COVID-19 and how they have responded to these challenges in a resilient way. Such an approach to reflective practice invites the participant to enhance thinking and doing through interrogating, rediscovering and redefining a particular view of an issue, since it is both the narrative itself and reflections upon the narrative which facilitates understanding and generate new knowledge in terms of creative responses to crisis and problem solving, together with a stronger self-esteem.
“A bird sitting on a tree is never afraid of the branch breaking, because its trust is not on the branch but on its own wings.”, Charlie Wardle
Visual-art based workshops helped to develop a range of core components of resilience; helped participants talking about their own resilience individually or in a group and ultimately using arts activities can help foster social empowerment and communicate the lived experience of participants to wider communities.
The participants described their stories with the help of trainers, facilitators and psychologists and through the workshop activities revealed many skills they were able to put in practice to adjust to the difficulties. Some participants expressed their resilience related skills bringing to light: a strong sense of hope, a family support and acceptance, making sense of yourself, volunteering, the ability seek help from health professionals, calling the senior helpline and others.
Although we cannot reveal more details but we can assure you that the results were very interesting. To stay update about the project progress please visit our website www.merestproject.eu or follow us on the most popular social networks with #merest_project and #resilience