Message from Mr Hymer: 11 March 2022
It was wonderful to see the overwhelming and generous support to Scott House's table top sale to raise money for UNICEF. Scott's election of UNICEF at the start of the academic year proved to be remarkably prescient, providing an opportunity for all our community to support the people of Ukraine. Children are naturally generous and also eager to respond when there is need. Hopefully the money raised will make a meaningful contribution to the humanitarian crisis.
I thought I would share some of the advice we received about helping children when they are concerned about war. Responding in an appropriate way is always a challenge. Two children of the same age can have a very different understanding of a situation. Children are inquisitive and keen to learn more about events. It is important to answer questions honestly and sensitively. Given the nature of war, it is often difficult providing adequate or definite answers to provide reassurance. If and when children ask questions or express concerns, they should be reassured that emotions such as feeling sad, angry or worried are normal.
It may be helpful for children to look at where Russia and Ukraine are and to explain the steps many countries around the world are taking to stop the conflict. Children may be reassured to learn how other countries are helping refugees and what aid agencies are doing to assist those in need. It is also important that children appreciate that distinguishing fact and fiction is even more difficult in times of war. They need to appreciate the importance of fact-checking and understand that not everything they hear from friends or from media outlets is the absolute truth. It may be useful to direct them to child friendly programmes such as Newsround and their web links.