For Refugee children

Hand crafted Worry Dolls
Earlier this week, a group of Year 9 Fashion and Design students were given the opportunity to spread some Christmas cheer to children at the AUT Refugee Education Early Childhood Centre, located in Mangere.

Pictured above are (L-R): Ava Parks, Elise Walsh, Isabell Smillie and Faith Tottle

Students presented children with a hand made Worry Doll* – this is the first project Fashion and Design students begin with each semester. They are given a brief on designing and making a Worry Doll inspired by New Zealand culture and language. Students began to collate ideas by learning about the meaning of a Worry Doll and incorporating an iconic Kiwiana ‘twist’ to their designs. Each doll has a special Māori name too, to help teach Te Reo Māori.

*The Worry Doll:
Originating from Guatemala and inspired by local folklore, the Worry Doll is designed for children to help aid anxiety. From being in a new environment to trying new things. The Worry Doll is a good listener. Children are encouraged to share their fears and worries with their doll, then hide it under their pillow every night. By morning, all worries are ‘magically’ taken by the Worry Doll.