The HEART Program provides children affected by serious or chronic stress with psychosocial support through art. Art helps them communicate feelings and possible traumas, become more confident, interact with peers and adults and engage in learning. In addition, the program makes education more interactive and fun for every child through engaging and instructive activities.
Specifically, the project in Bosnia aims at:
- Building a qualified team of local trainers to transfer the HEART methodology to teachers and pedagogues from primary schools, kindergartens and drop-in centers in Una-Sana and Posavina Cantons and, subsequently, throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina;
- Train teachers and pedagogues to use the HEART method in class;
- Establish a long-term partnership with the Cantonal Ministries of Education and Pedagogical Institutes to integrate the HEART Program into academic curricula across Bosnia and Herzegovina.
- 14 primary schools, 1 kindergarten and 6 drop-in centres in the Una-Sana and Posavina Cantons;
- 59 teachers, pedagogues, psychologists, social workers and special education professionals, employed by the aforementioned institutions, and an advisor from Pedagogical Institute of Una-Sana Canton have followed one training course to implement the HEART method in class;
- About 1’057 children of preschool and primary school age (48 classes) and of 2 drop-in centers for street children, who already had the chance to experience the HEART method through activities organized by trained teachers;
- 12 parents were introduced to HEART methodology by teachers;
- 3 local co-facilitators from Save the Children North-West Balkans.
Between September and December 2016, Alta Mane supported 3 training sessions, for 4 half days each, on the HEART method led by the HEART Program Director and 3 co-facilitators from Save the Children North-West Balkans. 59 teachers, pedagogues, psychologists, social workers and special education professionals from 14 primary schools, 1 kindergarten and 6 drop-in centres in the Una-Sana and Posavina Cantons attended the training. They received a kit to implement the HEART method in class. 898 pupils, ages 3 to 15, have already benefited from these artistic activities. The training sessions, supported by Alta Mane, also involved two principals and one advisor from the Una-Sana Canton Pedagogical institute.
Between April and May 2017, Save the Children UK-IT, with the support of Alta Mane, organized two follow-up training sessions to strengthen the participants’ knowledge and guarantee the quality implementation of HEART activities. During the same year, the Primary School Prekouje from Bihać has sent a request to consider making this school a sort of resource center, a model school where HEART Program will be integrated into the education process; two teachers from Posavina Canton decided to integrate the HEART methodology in their classrooms, during artistic activities, and the Bosnian TV channel, BHT, issued a coverage on the HEART Program.