Diana Acosta Donado, Operations Director, Aseinc
Aulas de Paz - Peace Classrooms
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Why did you create this innovation?
During the last years, the Venezuelan socio-economic crisis has increased the vulnerability of less benefited communities. Lack of access to food, stable basic services (electricity, water, connectivity) are exacerbating challenges to coexist, even more during the lockdown. The initiative attempts to provide tools to manage emotions initially in school environments transferable to the communities
How does your innovation work in practice?
The purpose of the program is to promote a well-being feeling in the classroom, transferable to other spaces. The implementation is done during the school year, through a manual designed by Aseinc. Aulas de Paz guides teachers or community leaders with a structured methodology divided in three modules: “I recognize myself”, “I recognize you”, “We live together”. Accompaniment from Aseinc is included to develop a series of dynamics with children and adults. Activities cover management of strategies and dynamics with different values; working mediation and conflict resolution; enhancing individual and group self-knowledge; management of emotions; working as a team and respecting diversity. At the end of each module and through origami recreational folding, children and adults create a dove, a crane, and a lotus flower respectively as symbols. In each fold they are invited to write a key message learned. The program can be adapted in the school, family, or community context.
How has it been spreading?
Since 2019 and supported by key social responsible partners (Chevron, European Union, Education Cannot Wait), Aseinc identified the urgent need to include topics like child protection, family conflict and managing emotions in children, parents and caregivers to any education or community program, even more after the COVID-19 lockdown.
To strengthen Aulas de Paz, Aseinc has incorporated psychologists to the team. Teachers and Community Leaders have reported a reduction of violence, however, it is not yet solved. In 2019 the program reached +4300 individuals. Since 2020 has been incorporated as a complement to all Aseinc's education programs like Aula20 and Nos Vemos en la Escuela to reach 420+ schools, 179,780 children, 5,400 teachers and Community Facilitators and 737,514 individuals.
If I want to try it, what should I do?
If any organization or community is interested in Aulas de Paz, Aseinc (Asociación para el Desarrollo de la Educación Integral y Comunitaria - Association for the Development of Comprehensive Education and Communities) is happy to share information on how to adapt the program to other vulnerable communities. Contact via email Carolina Orsini, Executive Director.
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