EVERY Child Has A Story: Adapting Healing Play practices for children who are deaf

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Refuge: Zimbabwe's Healing Play techniques have proven to help children overcome difficult experiences by training the trusted adults who serve them throughout their community.


In Zimbabwe, like many other low and middle-income countries, children navigate a landscape fraught with trauma. Yet, caregivers frequently lack the essential support and resources required for fostering resilience and facilitating recovery. Zimbabwe has 1 registered Mental Health Practitioner per every 1.5 million people, leaving care difficult to access. Years ago, Refuge: Zimbabwe, believing that every child has a story to share, embarked on a mission to bridge this gap in access by training trusted adults to use play, art, storytelling and drama to bring healing to hurting children in their community. A partnership with Dr. Tim Friesen, from Grand Rapids, MI helped bring crucial context with his Child Trauma Training Program.


The Refuge: Zimbabwe team believes in a community's capacity to address its own challenges in creative and innovative ways. By providing training to trusted members of a community, we work towards our mission to ensure that every child has the opportunity to share their story in the presence of a compassionate trusted adult.


Regina, the founder of Refuge: Zimbabwe and Trish, a deaf education expert, became friends in the late 1990’s when they were studying at Michigan State University. In 2006, shortly after Regina moved to Zimbabwe, Trish joined a team to come serve in the community where this work was first imagined: Gwayi River.


Trish has continued to support her friend and encourage this work from across the miles. Last year, she reached out to Regina asking how Healing Play could be offered to children who are deaf and the incredible teachers who serve them. Through a miraculous turn of events, they found a way.


18 years later, Trish will return to Zimbabwe to help Refuge: Zimbabwe and their incredible partners adapt their Healing Play practices to meet the needs of children who are deaf.

We are currently raising funds to cover the costs of Trish's travel and expenses for her trip to Zimbabwe, as well as funds for the adaptation process, trainings and Healing Play programs for children who are deaf.

Funds Raised

$ 2,105.44
Raised of $ 12,500.00
Days Left

Project Manager

Regina Chari

Funding Period

Start Date: 31st May, 2024
End Date: 31st July, 2024

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