It seems that, at any given point in time, it’s possible to turn on the news and read about something terrible happening on the other side of the world.
Recently, the news has been dominated by the war in Ukraine, and it’s been heartbreaking to see such unnecessary horrors unfolding in our time.
At Stars of HOPE, we believe that art has a role to play in providing emotional support and healing the emotional wounds of those currently suffering.
Hope During Wartime
Historically, aggressors like Russia, in addition to the physical damage they cause, have also tried to hurt their targets by wearing them down emotionally. This was Hitler’s strategy behind the relentless nightly bombings of London during the Blitz – more than anything, including the physical damage itself, Hitler wanted to wear the British people down emotionally to make them surrender.
But it didn’t work.
The people maintained their emotional resilience because they had three things: community, communication, and hope.
It’s important for the people of Ukraine to have all three during this unprecedented time.
Hope isn’t meant to take the place of physical needs. These must be met too, and thankfully they are with the help of amazing organizations like UNICEF, Save the Children, and Doctors Without Borders. But hope keeps the spirits up, and emotional support has been shown to improve physical healing in people who have suffered wounds and to help those who have suffered mental trauma or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) reintegrate into society at a faster pace.
Healing Power of Art
While there are many different ways to heal emotionally, art is one of the most universal.
Art has been with us since the beginning of our civilization, approximately 40,000 years ago, when our ancient ancestors began to paint on cave walls.
Art has stayed with us throughout this entire time, and it’s still one of the first ways children can communicate with the outside world about how they feel inside.
Art can help remind people of who they were before a tragedy took place. And it can help shape a new, stronger image for that person of who they will become after a tragedy has occurred.
When someone creates a Star of HOPE, they’re sending the message the same message that the person receives – that there are brighter days ahead, that suffering won’t last forever, and that ultimately, love will prevail.
How Can You Help?
We may find ourselves wondering what we can do to help as most of us watch the events unfold in Ukraine from afar.
One thing we can do is send stars with messages of love and support in care packages with other aid so that they go directly to the people who need them.
This lets people know that our global sense of community is alive and well and they’re part of it, that peace matters and that there are safe places in the world, as well as people who acknowledge and care for their humanity…something they may have a hard time believing right now.
We want to ask for your help. We depend on volunteers to either paint stars or send donations which lets us send stars from our hope bank to those suffering emotional wounds (it’s ok if you don’t have a lot to give – every thought and dollar makes hope happen). Or ask your organization to get involved today by hosting a corporate event.