- Protect Children
Mother's Day Donation 2022
Updated: Mar 16
PRESS RELEASE 7.5.2022
In honor of Ukrainian mothers in Finland, we Protect Children and our partners will donate a game to Finnish libraries and for groups with Ukrainian children. We will announce our project on Mothers Day, May 8th, at 10:00AM in central Helsinki, in front of our main library “Oodi” and Music Hall “Musiikkitalo”. The big digital screen on the facade of the Music Hall will host the video launch of our library project, including video greetings from First Lady of Ukraine Mrs Olena Zelenska and First Lady of Finland Mrs Jenni Haukio. These video greetings will be visible on various screens in different locations around the country - with the hope to reach as many Ukrainian and Finnish mothers as possible.
Based on the familiar memory game, our game also facilitates children’s emotional skills, the game is suitable for all families with children and can be played in libraries, among other places. Those families who fled the war in Ukraine have been taken especially into account in its development, and the game can be played even when not all players have a common language. Playing together promotes interaction between mothers and children and makes it easier to discuss emotions.
The strong cooperation between Protect Children and Fun Academy to support Ukrainian families with pro bono materials continues. The Finnish toy company Tactic has joined the project. The game supports social-emotional development, helping to process and discuss children's emotions. It is important for adults to listen to children’s concerns and discuss any feelings they may be experiencing. The game also makes it easier to discuss and deal with emotions caused by traumatic events, such as war.
Mothers and their children have been forced to flee the war zone in Ukraine. It is known that young children depend on the emotional control and emotion regulation skills of their caregivers. It is difficult for a child to understand war and the events or strong emotions it causes. Children need the support of adults in understanding, expressing and regulating their own feelings. Playing the game provides an age-appropriate way to facilitate emotion regulation, while teaching children and adults to discuss emotions. Playtime with a safe adult also increases a child’s sense of security.
“A young child’s behavior and actions are strongly based on how we parents teach and help the child to function in different situations. For this reason, it is very important that parents are guided to discuss the child’s feelings with the child, including confusing, unpleasant, or hurtful experiences. Children have the right to have opportunities to practice social-emotional skills in a way that is appropriate and comfortable for their age,” says Katariina Leivo, an expert in developmental psychology at the Finnish association Protect Children.
“We are donating the game to Finnish libraries and groups with Ukrainian children. We invite all Finnish and Ukrainian mothers and their children to a library to play and explore! Play and games in connection with education are at the heart of what we do at Fun Academy, so the choice to start exploring game ideas to help Ukrainian mothers and children when developing emotional skills in a highly difficult and tense situation was obvious for us. This game is also an invitation to come to the Finnish libraries to connect, to play, to read and to restore a sense of stability for the children,” says Sanna Lukander, CEO of Fun Academy.
“Playing is a great tool to deal with and learn to recognize emotions. As children play, they learn together and from each other. A game session also provides a safe setting to discuss thoughts that the emotion cards evoke. Being together is one of the most important values of games, so it was a pleasure to develop a game that is suitable for children around the world, especially now for Ukrainian mothers and children,” says Jemina Heljakka, CMO of Tactic Games.
“This project is honoring Ukrainian mothers for their strength. Many Ukrainian mothers are now separated from their husbands, far away from home, some of them have lost their homes or loved ones. But despite the horrible situation, they remain strong for the children, taking good care of them and making sure they are safe. We understand what they are going through and are ready to support them,” states Nadiia Fedorova, Association of Ukrainians in Finland.
“It is great that the collaboration to support Ukrainian families continues and we can do our part as Posti to support the campaign. The Ukrainian families need all the possible support and we are very happy to be part of this meaningful project”, says Anni Salmi of SVP Brand, Communications and Sustainability of Posti Group, Finnish Postal Services.
It is the responsibility and duty of every adult to promote the rights and interests of children.
“We thank all the Finns who support Ukrainian families and especially Tactic Games and Posti Group (Finnish Postal Services) in this collaboration. Their help is a great example of people's desire to do good. We also thank all those partners who have made this project possible; the Embassy of Ukraine in Finland, UPC Print, Havas Helsinki, Clear Channel, Google and Norders Agency”, say Nina Vaaranen-Valkonen, Executive Director, Senior Specialist, Psychotherapist of Protect Children and Sanna Lukander, CEO of Fun Academy.