Social Development Skills for Children in South Africa

Social Development Skills for Children in South Africa

Voice of the Child Association: Educating the Educators with programs for social development skills and emotional upskilling in children in the prevention of sexual harassment among young children.

I attended Dr Ayelet Giladi’s workshop on ‘Sexual Harassment in Young Children’, at our National Waldorf-Steiner Teachers conference in Cape Town recently and felt both inspired and empowered by the work she is sharing in South Africa.

I am an Educator specialised in the field of Therapeutic Art and my days are fulfilled as one of the Therapy Support Group teachers at Michael Oak Waldorf School in Cape Town. I have worked in this field for over 25 years.

Dr Giladi’s programs, which aim to prevent sexual harassment and abuse in young children from as young as 5+ years, is practical, grounded, and child-friendly.

Her workshops offer life skills for children, parents, and teachers to build the ground of respect, dignity, and equality as a measure by which to gauge how each child is being treated, or how they are treating others.

Through song, story, animal symbols, and games, Ayelet has devised a program that addresses an area that is often regarded as taboo. She offers the tools, through her school’s programs, to build healthy boundaries, respectful relationships, and skilful social interaction.

In my work over many years with children (particularly in my Hero Book work), I have become aware that our country is in great need of this practical guidance in dealing with a problem that is so widespread among our children.

My own Bridging Polarities workshops were formed out of a deep desire by South Africans to use art as a healing tool, which led to three art therapists and a music therapist from the Netherlands bringing their teachings to South Africa in 2002. They worked intensively to prepare the training, bringing together the fruits of their combined years of experience. These four women came to meet 15 South African women. They taught them to discover and recover their own wisdom. This work has been carried throughout South Africa, helping people to gain confidence and discover and recover their inner wisdom.

I can highly recommend working with Dr Ayelet Giladi and her ‘Taking a Stand’ (5-8 years) educational programs for young children and adolescents at Voice of the Child Association.

Ilana Rudolph
Therapeutic Art
Bridging Polarities through Art