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Emotional Highs

Emotions were running high and became the focus of sessions in 3 different homes this month.

On January 4th, social worker Anjana started off the new year with a Life Skills session in a shelter home in Uttar Pradesh. But when she arrived, she was greeted by 20 sad faces. One of the survivors had recently lost her one month old baby at a local hospital. The girls were mourning the loss together. At the request of the superintendent, Anjana conducted a session on decision making.

Girls burning away their regrets

After a brief introduction about the topic, Anjana gave the girls two slips of paper. On one paper they wrote their bad habits and regretful choices from 2022. On the other slip, they wrote down their priorities for 2023 and changes they wanted to see in their lives. Anjana then lit a fire and asked them to throw all the slips full of regrets and bad habits into the fire. The girls eagerly threw in their slips, wanting to leave all the hurt, pain and mistakes behind. She asked them to keep the slips of what they wanted to do with them and keep referring to it throughout the year. It was a tangible way to let go of past regrets, pain, and sadness. The girls felt lighter and more ready to embrace the present and the future.

12 survivors working on identifying emotions

2 states and 750 miles south, another Life Skills session was taking place at the same time. 12 survivors listened carefully as social workers Shilpa and Rupeli gave an overview on human nature, feelings and emotions. Survivors learned how to cope with anger, face their fears and ways to express their emotions. They learned skills to deal with their emotional responses so when unexpected situations arose they wouldn't get overwhelmed or anxious. They were encouraged to accept their feelings and allow themselves to feel both positive and negative emotions; be optimistic and laugh; and be mindful to seek knowledge about whatever they are facing.

Two days later, on January 6th, a third emotions-based session took place right between the first two, in Madhya Pradesh. Social worker Nitendri led a session on stress management with 22 tense survivors living in the shelter home.

Survivors destressing through art

Since most of the girls were anxious and sad, they welcomed any tips on how to deal with stress. Nitendri shared that stress was a normal part of life.Though it was okay to be angry, upset, or feel hopeless at times, being constantly angry, sad and hopeless would harm the body. It could also lead to negative behavior like bullying, skipping school, fighting, drinking and taking drugs. To manage and control their stress levels, survivors

were taught the

The girls' artistic creations

importance of taking care of themselves through eating healthy food, sleeping on time, exercising regularly and sharing their stress-causing problems with others. They also talked about ways to alleviate stress through listening to music, drawing, and drama. Together, they destressed with an art project. Though they had been tense when Nitendri arrived, they were left in a more relaxed state, and with new ways to keep caring for themselves and each other.


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