300 puppets for ‘therapy’ for earthquake child survivors
Finger puppets to be used in the psychological therapy of children affected by the 6.6 magnitude earthquake that took place in Izmir were prepared at Izmir University of Economics (IUE). 300 puppets produced by IUE Department of Textile and Fashion Design, who took action to support children who have lost their homes after the earthquake and have not been able to get over fear for a long time, will be delivered to expert psychologists within the scope of cooperation with the Turkish Psychological Association. Special puppets with animal, human and nature figures will be used by psychologists in play therapies for children.
The puppets, which were prepared in line with the request of expert psychologists, who came together with children by making field visits after the earthquake, were brought to life by a team of 5 from IUE Faculty of Fine Arts and Design, Department of Textile and Fashion Design. Head of Department, Prof. Elvan Özkavruk Adanır, Asst. Prof. Ebru Corsini, Research Assistant Elif Tekcan, Workshop Supervisor Filiz Deniz and Technician Aslı Kocamanlar Akçay worked non-stop for 4 days to prepare the puppets as soon as possible.
While Asst. Prof. Nilgün Gürkaynak from Department of Business Administration provided great support in finding sponsors for material supply and communicating with the relevant units, Prof. İlgi Şemin, Director of Vocational School of Health Services, and Child Development Program Lecturers Ezgi Oral, Songül Yasemin Özgün, and Betül Özkul Cura provided great support in conducting the process and communicating with psychologists. The drawings of 300 puppets with special figures such as doctors, firemen and policemen, in addition to family sets such as mother, father, sibling, grandmother and grandfather, were made by IUE academics. The meticulously prepared finger puppets will be delivered to psychologists within next week.
ONLINE MEETING WITH PSYCOLOGISTS
Prof. Elvan Özkavruk Adanır, Head of IUE Department of Textile and Fashion Design, said that they will continue to be in different projects for children or adults affected by the earthquake in the upcoming period. Prof. Adanır said, “We experienced an earthquake disaster on October 30 that saddened and scared us all. This painful event, which led to the deaths and injuries of many people, was also very challenging for children. We focused on what we can do for children affected by the earthquake. An online meeting was held on November 5 with trauma psychologists from the Turkish Psychological Association with the participation of academics from the Faculty of Business and Faculty of Communication and the Child Development Program, in addition to our department. The meeting was very useful in terms of what kind of projects could be done and what was needed.”
PROJECTS WILL CONTINUE
Prof. Adanır continued as follows: “The support intended for earthquake victims is not limited to making puppets. A series of activities are planned to be held in disaster areas or different points of Izmir in the upcoming period. Authorities are also eager to cooperate with universities in this regard. I believe that the puppets we prepared for children will be very useful in understanding their inner world and how they felt after the earthquake. In this process, not only us, but also academics from different departments provided great support. The Faculty of Communication will also contribute to the projects to be implemented in the future. I would like to state that we are ready to take part in any work to be carried out for earthquake victims that will reduce the effects of the earthquake.”