Many tragic stories emerged from the Ebola outbreak in West Africa – stories of tremendous fear and loss for families and communities. While working on psychological first aid materials for helpers assisting in the Ebola outbreak, Dr. Snider was moved by these stories from the field. oignant for her were stories of children fearful of “scary people” in protective suits – the very people who are there to help. Along with a small team of volunteers, she developed “I’m Just Like You!” as a contribution to help children affected by Ebola and to fill a gap in materials for young children. The book introduces two curious children to Michel, a kind helper and a real person – just like you!
The children’s book addresses the themes of fear of Ebola helpers, preventing infection, navigating death and grief, and reducing stigma and discrimination. The accompanying Caregiver Guide gives tips for talking to children about Ebola. It is intended for parents, aunts and uncles, teachers, community workers – anyone who can help children understand their experience and cope with their fears and feelings. The book also touches on the community impacts of Ebola, including the grief and isolation many surviving children and adults still suffer. It gives the message of love, care and respect among families, neighbors and communities as the way to move forward together into the future.
Both the book and caregiver guide are available in English and French (upon request). To make the resources accessible to local organizations, they are freely downloadable from the website: www.peaceinpractice.org.
Printed book orders are available from LM Publishers.
“For the Children of Africa, to be safe, to be comforted, to be happy and healthy!”