HAVING A TALK WITH A CHILD

During our trip Nina will talk to the Dutch, Flemish, French, Spanish and Portuguese children we meet. After all, how do they deal with difficult situations and emotions of grief and frustration? Would these children be able to teach us something about how to make opportunities out of difficulties? On this page she will give a brief account of these special meetings.


  • " This is me as a child. For this project I'm taking my 5year old self with me. With the same curiosity as I had when I was five I try to investigate how children deal with difficult situations and the difficult emotions that are tied to it. I'm especially curious about how they overcome these emotions, because I think children are exceptional good at this.

    For me the process of making a film is the most important of all and why I love what I do. It's always a excuse of getting extremely close to people, collecting experiences I recognize and finding answers on questions that I am having difficulties with, just like the rest of us. "

    Nina

HOLLAND

"Stop crying and start playing"

BELGIUM


The beginning

9 September 2017, Bronbeek, Belgium

Yesterday we experienced a very warm welcome with Marianne Moyson-Everse and her family in Borsbeek, a small town near Antwerp. At the local neighbourhood party, I had the chance to quietly interview the first Flemish children about their difficulties and how they go with them. Here are a few short quotes.

Helena (8 and a half)"I was crying a little bit, but also laughing a bit, but I didn't like it so much that I was laughing, so then I felt a bit weird...".

Dries (8) believes that adults should be careful with there children "That they look at you and see that things are not going well. And sometimes also that they see things will be ok and leave you alone for a moment."

Yesterday we became official pilgrims at the Jacobskerk in Antwerp. With the first beautiful stories on film and this official titel, the journey seems to have officially started!




  • Noortje (9) & Fien (8)

  • Wout (12)

  • Dries (8)

Noortje: "If someone has died I think of the nice moments we had  together and then I try to not think about the sad things".

Do you do the same Fien, with difficult moments like these?

Fien:  "Sometimes.... and sometimes not. And then I just keep crying. Until my body says: I've actually forgotten, so why am I still weeping?

FRANCE

A day of peace
21 September 2017

Today is the International Day of Peace. This is a good time to reflect on what peace means and to realize what kind of peace we encounter on our journey.
We talk with the children we meet along the way about sorrow and how they deal with this awkward feeling.
After all, what space is there for sorrow? And how do you continue dealing with this sadness?
We talk mainly about minor distress: a cat that has died, a hard fall, the feeling of missing a parent when they are away for a few days.
For a child it seems there is no difference between big and small sorrows. And yet I think: Thank god, these are children who have grown up in peace. Children who have a home and seem to have space to talk about their grief.
It is wonderful to be able to give these children a voice and to take the time to listen.
Today, we stand still for a moment and ponder about the other side. Because how many children are missing this voice!
It can be so different and it is so many places in the world where chaos reigns, like Myanmar, North Korea, Syria, Yemen, to name but a few of the conflict countries.
Two years ago, former child ombudsman Marc Dullaert said that countries are still doing too little to encourage child participation. "Not one of the 163 countries in the Kids Rights Index achieved the highest possible score in this respect. This means that the views of the 2.2 billion children in the world are not sufficiently taken into account on issues that directly concern them,"says Dullaert.
If Western countries are already struggling to appreciate a child's voice, how long will it take for the rest to realize this?

Oscar is showing his moves in Saintes, France

Viva la France
1 October 2017


Why am I so fortunate and do others have to suffer? Is a question that the 12 year old Maxime from Bordeaux is asking himself.
With a fierce look in his eyes he is telling me about his view on the world and how he would like to see it changed.
Stan, the younger brother of Maxime, is telling me about his godfather, a fantastic man! With tears in his eyes he looks back on the last time he saw him. And he still has to wait for a month until he returns! How do you cope with these sort of feelings?
In the past Candice, of 14, would get very angry and frustrated.
But now she just goes in her room, closes the curtains, puts the music on and starts to dance.

What a beautiful encounters in Bordeaux! A big thanks to the family Romatet who received us so warmly into their home.

Taking a break...

SPAIN

  • Hannah

    Hannah (14), from the village Tama in the north of Spain, lost her father.
    She tells me how her friends helped her and can see when she is not doing well. She feels a sort of responsibility towards her mother in dealing with her loss.

    "How am I going to tell my mother that I'm in pain when my mother is in the same grief?"

  • Alvaro

    Alvaro is 9 years old and lives in the town of Lebeña. He tells me how sad he was when his dog died. When he feels this way he tries to think about football, the sport he loves. He wants to become a professional football player when he grows up.

  • Lucia and her sister Helena

    Lucia (13) and Helena (15) have had a difficult year with there father getting very ill and laying in the hospital. They both deal with it differently. Lucia needs time for herself and goes skating to put her mind at ease. Helena needs the company of her friends. She tries to see the little visits at the hospital as something education. She wants to be a doctor.

  • Pilu

    Pilu (16) is also living in Tama, a small town in the middle of the beautiful Picos mountains. This super ambitious girl wants to be a doctor and is already practicing her stitching skills on her wounded pets (4 dogs, 3 cats, 2 ducks). When she feels upset she goes running, creating tracks al over the field.