“I was harassed when I was a child, many, many times while I was growing up. There was a lot of verbal and emotional harassment that continued. I didn’t feel protected at all. “
“However, there was one thing that gave me a sense of joy and strength, and even security when I was a kid, which was singing and music,” said Illani, co-founder of CreaTee Kit, shared with Vulcan Post.
As a firm believer in the power of the arts in healing, Illani was passionate about creating an artistic outlet for children to find the same joy and security as the arts.
So she and her sister, Masliza, founded CreaTee Kit, a social enterprise that produces DIY t-shirt kits for kids ages 5-12. They are meant to build emotional intelligence and be a fun activity for children and their parents. art together.
What do t-shirts have to do with bullying?
A CreaTee kit includes a t-shirt or bag along with art materials such as stencils, false eyes, glue, paint, batik, marker pens, 3D paint, and fabric markers.
There are a variety of animal templates to choose from, such as a rabbit, a giraffe, a cat, and more. Their t-shirts and canvas kits are sold at a price of € 68 per team each and they also have a subscription box which costs 2 220 RM for 4 months. They also organize workshops on how to create these DIY kits for kids as well.
For those of us who are not too versed in early childhood education, it may not be so easy to understand the link between creating these t-shirts and how they help with general bullying.
“Harassment occurs due to lack of trust on both sides, harassment and harassment. Our mission is to sow the seeds of confidence and self-esteem through the process of creation at an early age, to build your emotional intelligence so that things do not move negatively as they grow, “said Illani.
Illani added that the pillars of emotional intelligence include self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, social skills and empathy.
The way their DIY kits catalyze emotional intelligence is that when a child uses their kit, it encourages deliberate thinking and decision making during the creation process, which helps create self-awareness.
And because their creative process requires a lot of concentration, it allows children to complete the work and, in return, feel fulfilled to finish their art, which ultimately increases their self-confidence and intellect. Emotional intelligence.
In addition, since their parents can work together with their children in this trade, parents can get to know their child better and are able to identify any behavioral issues in their child.
Back to disadvantaged children
As a social enterprise, they donate part of their profits to organize free t-shirt workshops for disadvantaged children, such as PPR flats, refugee groups such as the Rohingya people, Orang Asli schools and more.
Speaking of which, during one of her workshops with children living in PPR flats, they met a girl who only knew how to speak Tamil and who was terrified when she entered the workshop for the first time full of strangers.
“There were a lot of hands gesturing and cheering for him to do the activity, and he finally managed to push hard. At the end of the session, he put on his T-shirt and stayed with other kids. He even helped clean everything up. “That girl left with a proud smile of success, and that is the impact of our work on self-esteem and emotional intelligence,” shared Illani.
One of the main challenges Illani and Masliza face with this social enterprise is to help people understand the impact they are trying to have with these DIY kits.
“We have received comments where parents say that the final product may not be beautiful. Therein lies the misunderstanding. The beauty of CreaTee lies in the process, not the final product. No matter how the shirt comes out, the kids are more than happy because it’s theirs, ”Illani said.
They also found that there are parents who do not take their implementation seriously, as for some the use of the arts in the impact they try to produce is frivolous.
“Parents prefer to buy new items of clothing or electrical appliances. Some can’t get over the fact that they have to design the t-shirt themselves instead of buying one already made ”.
“Once again, we think it’s about educating Malaysians about alternative learning. And parents must want to spend time with their children, ”the sisters shared with Vulcan Post.
– // –
Since they have helped me know how DIY t-shirts can help with emotional intelligence, it is now clearer how they try to achieve the impact they want through the arts.
However, this was a process that they had to share with me extensively so that I could see the bigger picture of it all. For parents with just a few minutes of time, it can still be hard to understand the importance of what they do. However, make art as a it means of emotional intelligence has been studied with positive results.
CreaTee Kit can take the opportunity to contact more educators to spread their reach and impact, and perhaps someday they can also participate in national anti-harassment campaigns through their work.
- You can learn more about CreaTee Kit here.
- You can read more social enterprises that we have written here.
Featured Image Credit: Illani and Masliza, co-founders of CreaTee Kit