When children experience trauma in early life, their brains are altered. Our work is to remove the shame they experience and return them to the experience of innocence. To reboot the safety and love they feel in relation to the outside world, so they can grow up to be balanced, loving adults, thereby breaking the cycle of abuse.
Early Childhood Trauma has an acute impact of everything we do in our lives. When bad things happen to us, our brain moves from one of engagement to one of protection. When we need to protect ourselves we become defensive and emotionally unavailable, so use big behaviours to make sure our needs are seen. It destroys the everyday opportunities that allows us to learn and build relationships.
If nothing is done to help our children in Kenya, and around the world, the potential for life- long behaviours of abuse and addiction continues. Not every traumatised child becomes addicted, but every addict has experienced trauma. By building safe, strong and therapeutic connections, it not only helps our children understand that what happened to them is not their fault, that they are not responsible for the actions of others, but it also builds their self-esteem and therefore their resilience, to help bring the generational abuse to a halt.
If organisations continue to simply support children with their daily physical needs, and ignore the emotional damage that has been done, our communities will continue to lose the capacity to be caring loving family members, and then caring, kind parents.
The approach we use is translated through the world. The intense, frightening abused children we work with towards healing their trauma are sadly not unique to Kenya. By educating and training professionals and parents throughout the world, abused and traumatised children are given a future of love and connection, rather than fear and potential addiction.
Breaking the cycle of abuse is easy. Learn to look behind what is seen and connect to the emotions and feelings that drive the behaviour. Understand and remember that the brain wires around trauma and impacts the way our children process and act in times of stress.
Changing brains through connection, changes generations to come.