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Washington Post feature notes WSU art student's work with Syrian children
January 6, 2013
The uprising in Syria against President Bashar al-Assad, now in its 21st month, is having a profound and often disturbing effect on children in the region. Parents and humanitarian organizations are struggling to help. Many refugee schools have play rooms and art programs that encourage children to express their fears and start to regain a sense of normality. Rola Kadi, a Syrian American art student at Wayne State University, has been giving art lessons to students at the Bashaer School in Antakya, Turkey. When she asks children who left the country several months ago to draw anything that's on their minds, they gravitate to images of the Syria of their dreams. "They draw the revolutionary Syrian flag with words like freedom and peace," she said. Sooner or later, she said, most children stop coloring the sea red and reach for the blue pencils and crayons.