IUE communicators are opening the doors to new worlds for refugee kids. Students of Faculty of Communication, Izmir University of Economics (IUE), say, “stop” to negative discourse about Syrian children, who have been forced to flee their homes, with the “See Them as a Kid” titled project they developed. As the students get a chance to reminisce about their childhood, they draw and color with refugee kids, play outdoor games, and discover the colors of life together.
Students Enginalp Erkısa, Bahadır Tunahan Civan, Alican Cura, Yiğit Kocayol, Yavuz Kaya, Ecem Çelik, Büşra Germir, Şevval Asena Çelik, Duygu Uçkaç, Buğu İrem Kaymakçı, Yasemin Ece Çiçek, Murat Yılmaz, Aytül Öteçelebi, Turuhan Alkır, Emre Ekin, İdil Tuba Salar, Erel Karanfil, and Aytuna Yüken aim to stop the hatred towards refugee kids with the social responsibility project, which was developed under the guidance of Prof. Dr. Ebru Uzunoğlu, Dean of IUE Faculty of Communication, Lecturers Assoc. Prof. Dr. Selin Türkel, Aytül Özkan.
Enginalp Erkısa, a senior at IUE Department of Public Relations and Advertising, reported that they reached out to the children of families who ran away from the war in their country and settled down in Izmir. “We would like to remind the society that these kids are just kids regardless of their religion, language, race, etc. We hope to prevent the discourse of hatred towards more than one million Syrian children living in our country. This project aims to stop the society who otherizes these children, who had been forced to flee their homes, opportunities because of the war. A child is a child. Before this project, I had a different opinion about these children who could not speak Turkish, approached me, and tried to sell pocket tissues. With this project, we are trying to raise awareness about the discourse of hatred that we maybe not be aware of,” said Erkısa.
‘Their drawings reflect the effects of war’
They carried out a social media based awareness campaign, and they participated at various activities with the children, said Erkısa and reported that they held design and print workshops with the support of IUE Department of Fashion and Textile Design. Erkısa, who said that they drew pictures with children, said, “We observe the effects of war on children in their drawings. When we spend time with them, we see that they are only kids, so we want others to see them for what they are. They drew pictures, and those drawings have been transferred onto t-shirts. Seeing their happiness made us happy. We will continue to organize more events and activities as part of our project. We are going to hold an outdoor games activity with them”.