Emma was only four when she saw her father burn down her home with her mother still inside.
Emma is now living with her maternal grandparents. They’re doing their best, but they’re not coping. They have lost their daughter and they’re still shocked and devastated. And they feel intense hatred for their son-in-law, which is understandable.
That’s a major problem for Emma, because she is far too young to really understand what’s going on. She remembers a terrible fire and her mum dying, and she knows her dad is in jail. Yet she still loves and grieves for both her parents.
It’s no surprise that when Emma started school the following year she was showing signs of trauma.
She’s uncooperative and angry at home. At school Emma finds it difficult to concentrate. She’s disruptive and sometimes lashes out at other children.
In truth, Emma is sad and confused. We discovered that she is blaming herself. She is wondering if she did something wrong and whether she had made her dad angry that day. She’s worried that she was somehow responsible for her mum’s death.
Children Ahead gives children like Emma the intensive support they need to recover.
Right now there are 26 children in the program, with three staff.
But we have received countless more referrals to this program. They’re for kids who are deeply traumatised, who have seen or experienced terrible events; kids just like Emma.
And they need your help.
It costs $16,750 to have a child in our Children Ahead program for a year. That’s why we urgently need to raise $117,250 by the end of June. With your help we can accept another seven traumatised children into our Children Ahead program to get the help they need and deserve.
In the current crisis we have not been able to be with them to give them a hug or wipe their tears. But using technology we can still give the children the support they need.
Right now, they need you more than ever.
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