The Social Clowning Program is extremely instrumental in helping at-risk children begin to heal from their past trauma. The clowns not only provide joy and friendship, but they pave the way for other therapies to continue helping each child.
When Dalia came to us, she wouldn’t speak or smile. Now, she lights up every time her favorite clown comes to visit.
When Sara came to us, she’d scream and run away at the sight of a match. Now, we know why because she confided in a clown.
When Ari came to us, he’d panic when someone tried to hug him. Now, he’s the first to offer a big hug to greet the clowns!
This therapeutic startup was developed and introduced at Achuzat Sara Chilren’s Home, in cooperation with Dream Doctors, the primary provider of medical clowning in Israeli hospitals. The same skill Medical clowns use in hospital settings are now used to help traumatized children in residential care. In hospitals, the clowns help people to overcome patient’s fears, to undergo painful procedures, calm family members and generally make people smile and feel better. The same principles and practices used by the clowns in the hospitals, is extremely effective in the treatment of our traumatized, anxious, hurting yet wonderful children.
Through a combination of fun, non-judgmental and non-threatening encounters with the children, the clowns, professionally trained and less likely to generate suspicion or anxiety, are able at least initially, to reach the children and interact on a deeper level, than more traditional therapists.
We look to expand the Social Clown Care program and make it available to many more children, who will benefit greatly. In addition, we pride ourselves on our comprehensive intervention program which encompasses not only our children but also their parents and/or older siblings. The goal is to strengthen relationships between parents and children, to teach parenting skills and to enrich and reinforce parenting roles, thereby breaking the cycle. It is our dream to include social clowning in programs for parents and staff, so that they too will benefit from this intervention.