The power of reading
Sometimes a story told in an appealing way can do wonders. Experts from India and abroad came under one roof to discuss the use of books in soothing grief of the children under trauma.The three-day conference ‘Reading is Healing’ was organised by Association of Writers and Illustrators for Children (AWIC) and Indian section of International Board on Books for Young People (Ind.BBY) with an aim to spread the use of books and reading as means to heal people, especially children affected by trauma in various forms. Eminent international and Indian speakers from 15 countries shared their views on therapeutic role and effects of books on children to facilitate emotional growth and healing.
Ira Saxena, convener of the conference, said that the concept of reading and telling stories for healing children who have gone through trauma is very new, but has a lot of potential in it. “We have firm conviction in the potential of storytelling and reading to revive hopes among children who have undergone trauma, be it due to man-made disaster or natural calamity,” she said.
The causes of trauma can be different kinds of fears, complexes and adjustment problems as a result of natural calamities, man-made disasters and psycho-social traumas, both at schools and at home.
Various speakers from Pakistan, US, Uganda, Africa, Japan, Italy and Greece discussed the global importance of literature as a tool for therapy, presented details of some successful projects based on this concept and introduced techniques to calm traumatised minds through reading.