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StoryLiving – Enabling youth with developmental disabilities & mental health disorders to share their COVID-19 experiences through digital storytelling

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The project “Enabling youth with developmental disabilities & mental health disorders to share their COVID-19 experiences through digital storytelling – StoryLiving”, will apply the Storyliving/storytelling method as an innovative recovery methodology in order to address mental health disorders and issues such as social inclusion enhanced by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Talking about one’s emotions and personal experiences is not an easy task; there is a whole process behind it: remember, understand, assume, aim to share it with other people, understanding the reasons to share it with another person, etc. To verbalize means to have become aware and see the situation in a different perspective, allowing one to notice positive points of any situation. When emotional distress arises, it is not possible to teach about emotions as if we were talking about science. We need an effective tool, a vehicle to take us during this journey and here is where storyliving/storytelling plays a major role. At the same time, storytelling can help raise awareness for the struggles of youth with ASD and mental health disorders, especially during the pandemic, as these target groups have been even more isolated than before.

The idea of the project is the collective development of stories by youth with developmental disabilities or by youth/young adults with mental health problems based on their COVID-19

lived experiences.

The objectives of the project are:

  • To help youth with ASD/ mental health disorders cope with the pandemic
  • To support youth trainers, educators and social workers and increase their capacity to use storytelling in their work
  • To promote the social inclusion of youth with ASD/ mental health disorders through storytelling
  • To raise awareness about the special issues that people with ASD / mental health disorders face during the COVID-19 outbreak