He Is A Champion For Rohingya Refugee Children In Bangladesh
Meet Korvi Rakshand, a 2018 Disaster Feedback Fellow of the Disaster Recovery Network at GlobalGiving.
When nearly one million Rohingya refugees fled Myanmar for Bangladesh in August 2017, Korvi Rakshand didn’t hesitate. He knew JAAGO Foundation, the education nonprofit he founded in 2007, would do everything necessary to help.
“For the last 11 years, whenever there was a disaster, we were the first organization in Bangladesh to respond. So when the Rohingya refugees came, people expected JAAGO to be there. We’re a local organization that has always stood alongside the people during crises in Bangladesh.”
But when the scale of the Rohingya refugee crisis is so large, deciding how to respond most effectively can be daunting.
“First, we took some time to understand the problem,” said Korvi. “We decided to focus on healing from trauma because we felt that part was missing from the response. We have a space where 500 kids come. Eighty are orphans and the others have families. We have divided the place into a couple rooms. There’s the learning zone, where kids learn very basic manners and education. There’s the digital zone where kids can watch cartoons and other things. The other area is the sports area. All three areas are related to trauma management.”
As part of the healing process, children are encouraged to draw in the learning zone. Drawing is a common tool used by psychosocial organizations to help young children work through their trauma. Korvi’s team was shocked and saddened by the children’s artwork.
“The first things they drew were helicopters and guns,” he said. “That’s not something that you expect from a kid, but that’s what they saw.”
Trained psychologists come from Dhaka to work with the kids, as well.
“We’re just trying to make their lives a bit normal.”
Korvi is a 2018 Disaster Feedback Fellow of the Disaster Recovery Network at GlobalGiving. Learn more about the fellowship.