The MOVE project, implemented by Terre des hommes (Tdh) in Eastern Europe (Romania, Moldova and Albania) and financed by UEFA over a period of four years (mid-2008/mid-2012), has trained more than 1000 animators/teachers in the methodology “Movement, Games and Sports”(MGS).
This methodology avoids competition and exclusion, promotes more cooperation and integration in sports and games, reinforces the resilience of vulnerable children and improves their psychosocial well-being in general; all this, thanks to the development of their life skills (adaptability, cooperation, empathy, managing emotions, communication, responsibility, etc.).
The people trained have hence allowed approximately 10’000 children to benefit from specific activities with very encouraging results, such as reduced aggressive behaviour, better relationships with their peers and with adults.
Also, for the most vulnerable children, there was a clear improvement in their so called ‘dysfunctional’ behaviour.
The MOVE project has also proven in its three countries of intervention that the MGS methodology greatly contributes to child protection in the following way:
- By modifying the attitude of adults in charge of children for a larger participation of children as actors of their lives.
- By reinforcing the life skills of children towards greater self-esteem, resilience and self-protection.
- By participating in case management through games and feedback in order to facilitate the identification and protection of children at risk.
- By reinforcing community involvement via the participation of key community members in activities and training.
- By promoting the action of Terre des hommes in residential homes/prisons thanks to a comprehensive and fun tool that allows difficult topics to be dealt with.
With reference to this unique experience, we thought important to create a list of 15 traditional games played in these three countries of Eastern Europe in order to promote their culture and therefore allow a majority of people to benefit from these resources.
In order to obtain an updated game manual for child protection that is accessible to everyone, we have added five ‘international’ games – those most often played and appreciated in the first manual of 20 games Laugh, run and move to develop together: games with a psychosocial aim’ developed par Terre des hommes in 2007.
The particular addition to this manual of traditional games, compared to the first manual mentioned above, is found in the chapter ‘Links with child protection’ added to every game.
This chapter is to be used if needed as a tool for child protection by asking children questions about factors of self-protection.
This makes this manual an important element of the Tdh child protection projects.