Merete Grimeland & Therese Byhring
World Wide Narrative
Merete and Therese focus on reducing relational challenges among children who have experienced a difficult upbringing. In addition, World Wide Narrative provide a tool which supports children in developing resilience and turn a negative past into a bright future by rewriting the childrens personal narratives. This is achieved through their two products ’Digital storytelling’ and ’HEI!’.
In Norway, children who have suffered parental neglect or failures of the social system are assigned trusted adults to look after them. However, these children often do not have a safe communication channel to contact them outside of working hours. As a consequence, these children are left with no one to talk to about their problems and feelings, leading them to feel alone and left out. This puts them at risk for mental health issues and relationship problems in addition to school drop-outs. Also, children who have been neglected will continue to face these risks because they see no future for themselves beyond their current circumstances and believe bad things will keep happening to them.
World Wide Narrative helps neglected children overcome their obstacles through two solutions:
Digital Storytelling: Through digital storytelling courses, children get to rewrite their past. They do this by taking something that actually happened to them and change their role from being the victim to being the hero, which helps them make the changes they need to create a brighter future. The written story is then made into a short video so that others could get a better understanding of the children’s situation. When children rewrite their own narrative, they realize that they are not trapped by it, and this empowers them to take charge of their own life.
HEI!: HEI! is an encrypted communication app for children that provides a safe channel to keep in touch with their most trusted contact person whenever they need and wherever they are. The vision of HEI! is to give children a way to reach the adults they feel the safest with through which they receive support and motivation to continue studying, going to school, and work.