For decades, Iraqis have been battered in by dictatorship, economic sanctions, foreign and civil conflicts. Violence continues to be omnipresent with car bomb blasts, images of massacres and be-headings sowing death and fear across the country. This chaos has also allowed thieves, extortionists and traffickers to prosper.
The Ruya Foundation for Contemporary Culture in Iraq has set up a project called 'What happened' to help people who have suffered some kind of trauma. It aims at introducing drama therapy to help the people.
Tamara Chalabi, chair of the Ruya Foundation, said, "The drama therapy project explores a way of addressing people and their problems in an extremely damaged society such as Iraq, that has experienced so much trauma and violence."
Furat al-Jamil, an Iraqi-German artist who also works with Ruya, said, "Iraq is a society for men, not really for women. These girls are particularly vulnerable. The first time Ruya Foundation visited the orphanage, the girls were very shy, they were hiding, all of them wore scarves. Now you see them liberated from a lot of inhibitions."
Focusing majorly on lost childhood, early marriage, social inequalities the play tackled a range of issues with a spontaneous mix of humor and gritty bluntness. The young troupe of girls living in orphanages have found some confidence and self-esteem with the drama therapy.