How to expect a child’s development to be the same given the many different circumstances around the world? How to expect a child that lives in a situation of extreme poverty, hunger, or with no place to live due to a natural disaster or a conflict could have proper learning abilities? The answer is: through art! Music, dance, painting, drawings, or any other art form can bring an improvement to children’s emotional structure, cognitive abilities, and social and communication skills.
A child under stress tends to have an aggressive behavior, or could be very shy and insecure. Through dance and the rhythm of music, for example, these children learn how to control their own body, their movements, learn how to project themselves and are able to increase their self esteem. With drawings and paintings, they can show their feelings, expose their agonies and start to better understand the surrounding space, the meaning and importance of things, and their own importance within the environment they live in. The improvement of their hand-eye coordination brings them closer to the outside world.
The NGO Save the Children is an organization present in more than 50 countries around the world trying to make a change in the lives of children in need, offering tools for the communities to achieve a sustainable development. In 2011, Save the Children created the project HEART – Healing and Education through the Arts. The main purpuse of the project is to approximate children to the various forms of arts in order to develop them. Today HEART has reached more than 10.000 children in Mozambique, Nepal, Malawi and Haiti and they expect to reach more than 50.000 by 2015.
“Art says the unsayable; expresses the inexpressible, translate the untranslatable.” – Leonardo da Vinci