Archive for October, 2015


October 10, 2015

Migrants arrived on the northern shore of the Greek island Lesbos last month after crossing by rubber raft from Turkey. Many asylum seekers have lost critical formative years to violent conflicts that have interrupted educations and aborted careers. Credit Tyler Hicks/The New York Times

They travel alone in their silent dreams. Young and uncertain, yet determined to eek out a life beyond crossing borders from the derelicts of Syria into Hungary and Turkey, to going somewhere else. They are only young asylum seekers. But what is unimaginable and irreparable in their human existence is their loss of formative years. These are the years from puberty to childhood lost in transit for survival, hoping to seek shelter in the unknown. And what is even more capriciously deprecating for these asylum seekers is the benign poverty in existence – their lack of food, basic essentials for sanitation and health care,  clothing, shelter from nature’s unrelenting onslaught of heavy wind, rain storm, cold, or anything else that will rupture a sense of civility for survival. Finance to pay for any relief from the above is a grey cloud in the sky.

In a Briefing Paper on “Early Childhood Development: Building Blocks of Life”, the Greater Twin Cities United Way (July, 2010) explains:

The negative effects of poverty are pervasive, cumulative, and increase with age (Shore, 1997). Children who are raised in poverty show a negative impact even when they are born healthy and free of medical problems. They tend to show gradual declines in mental, motor, and socio-emotional development; they have poorer quality relationships with their caregivers; and they are more likely to exhibit anxious attachment. In preschool, they are more likely to have problems getting along with other children and functioning on their own. By the time they start school they are more likely to need special education services and as they progress through school they are more likely to be held back.” (

Without retrospect in any shape or form, young asylum seekers losing formative years do not even have any idea what to look for in a mirror. No parents, relatives or any kinship of ancestry. They are prey to human trafficking and slavery, innocent and unaccountable in their acts of survival. And governments, such as Germany and other EU countries, “hosting” these non-citizens, make responsibility for these thousands of individuals a tsunami of economic distress. Notwithstanding the “entry level” of these displaced victims into the fabric of society.

How the fabric of society will look like in the future with these diaspora of young asylum seekers, leaves much to human development over time. According to the Handbook of Child Psychology, Theoretical Models of Human Development (2006), society has to cope with the affects of the “bioecological model” known as the “proximal process”. (Damon W. and Lerner M. Richard, Eds., Vol. I, 6th Edition, Handbook  of Child Psychology, Theoretical Models of Human Development, New Jersey, John Wiley & Sons Inc., 2006. Online: books.…). This “proximal process” includes varied constructs for human development (may be useful apps for asylum seekers – losing formative years in reaching for adulthood), such as different forms of activities, physical and mental, a time-line connectivity spectrum of activity continuum (how much time allotted for each assigned task), people interaction and other socio-ecological situations relative to building blocks in human development. Again, all this will imply money –  and the economics of everyday living.

Truly, to look at the magnitude of the plight of these young asylum seekers, it is a prerogative for governments to assess, and to rightfully understand, that formative years provide mental and physical resources for value-enrichment in human development. Such resources will open vistas of possibilities for human explorations, and ensure possible economic, social and life-enhancement development- for individuals and the community in which they live. Neglect of this may be catastrophic as we pass through the 21st century.

~ Leonard Dabydeen


From Across the Atlantic Ocean: Three Worlds One Vision – Rise Up After The Fall – ….

October 5, 2015

Three Worlds One Vision ~ Guyana-Brazil-USA

Rise Up After The Fall by Leonard Dabydeen

October 4, 2015

Poetry Corner Blog by Rosaliene Bacchus