The SKILD Center, supported by Theirworld, has created a library of educational films with activities and advice for teachers, parents and children who are unable to access schools or specialists.
When the pandemic forced Lebanon into lockdown, schools were closed for the second time in months. The double impact of Covid-19 and the country’s economic crisis meant children with special educational needs were hit hard by a lack of learning and therapy sessions.
The SKILD Center in Mount Lebanon decided to make a series of educational films to provide families and teachers with creative ways to help children who are at home and unable to access schools or specialists.
Support from Theirworld helped them to achieve this - and the first video for Lebanese and refugee children has just been launched. SKILD will produce more than 70 films to form a digital library of resources, including activities to enhance children’s emotional, cognitive, motor and speech abilities.
Ten new videos will be published in Arabic each week on the organisation’s YouTube and Facebook pages. They will also be shared by SKILD’s partner schools, Lebanon’s Ministry of Education and Higher Education, the Center for Educational Research and Development, and the online TV channel of the An-Nahar newspaper.
The films feature advice, basic skills and educational activities from experts in special education, speech therapy, behaviour support, psychological support and applied behaviour analysis therapy. Some episodes will show parents of children sharing their experiences of raising a child with special educational needs.
Watch a SKILD Center video on speech and language therapy ...
SKILD - an initiative of the Lebanese Society for Educational and Social Development (LSESD) - was founded in 2011 to help children with special educational needs, as well as their families and teachers.
Director Hiba Al Jamal said: "Our goal is to reach every child in Lebanon and the Arab World whose access to specialised intervention was limited due to Covid-19 and different hardships. We are grateful to contribute to the variety of Arabic resources and provide educators and parents with guidance and activities to enhance their children's capacities at home."
The SKILD initiative is one of nine new projects which Theirworld has supported this year to help up to 20,000 children and adult learners continue their education during the Covid-19 pandemic.
In Uganda and Tanzania, our partners distributed learning materials to children who were unable to participate in online lessons because they could not afford an internet connection. In Kenya and Nigeria, we worked with on-the-ground partners who held workshops to help teachers move their classes online. We also provided virtual summer activity packs to hundreds of Syrian refugee children in Lebanon.
“At the height of the school closures, 90% of the world’s students were shut out of their classrooms. Months later, many of them still cannot return to school,” said Theirworld President Justin van Fleet. “So it is vital that we continue to support our projects in countries like Lebanon and help our partners to deliver learning in innovative ways.”