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Project Hibuki: therapy for children with war trauma

hibuki helping children with trauma

What is Hibuki therapy?

Hibuki therapy is a unique method developed in Israel. Hibuki looks like an ordinary cuddly toy - a dog with sad eyes and long "hugging" paws, but it is so much more than that! Hibuki means "hugs." This unique method was developed and founded in Israel by Dr Shan Hen-Gal and Ms. Dafna Saron. Ms. Dafna Saron is the director of the international project.

This specifically developed therapy helps to build the feeling of emotional and physical security. Hibuki therapy helps children affected by the war in Ukraine to restore their mental health without focusing on the psychotrauma. Through playing, art or dialogue, Hibuki allows children to share their experiences, with the help of toys to talk about their own feelings and emotional experiences they have had, and better to cope with the effects of traumatic events.

This methodology has been tested and has already helped children in Israel, Japan, the USA and Europe. It has been experimentally proven that Hibuki therapy is the most effective method for rehabilitation from childhood trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder.

How does it work?

In five sessions with the help of trained therapists and together with the cuddly toy, children learn to understand their own condition and take care of themselves. Parents are helped to recognize and respond to their children's psychological state. The cuddly toy always stays near the child and gives a feeling of security.

The transmission of such a state is especially urgently needed for children who have witnessed military operations, even if they live in the remote areas.

This toy is produced in a special factory. To receive it, parents sign an agreement on joint art therapy.


Hibuki in Donetsk region

"Hibuki-Therapy" project has been also launched in Pokrovsk, city in Donetsk region.

Pokrovsk is located less than 60 km from the front line. Therefore, it regularly becomes the scene of shelling by the Russian army. The only free evacuation train with war refugees departs from Pokrovsk station every day, many have found shelter in the city.


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