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Social worker provides guidance for talking to kids about war in Ukraine

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The war in Ukraine is sending shockwaves across the globe.

Parents may try to shield their children from what’s going on, but it’s not always possible. 

News 8 spoke with Jenny Voelker, a licensed clinical social worker at Community Health Network, about how to talk to kids about this difficult situation.

“Let the child’s questions guide you to say: Well, this is happening in a different country,” Voelker said. “And maybe get out a map or go on the internet and do a little bit of research. Finding out the answers with your child can be really empowering.”

Voelker also says children often have a hard time expressing themselves. She encourages parents to be patient and listen closely for words such as “scared” or “confused,” and then validate those feelings. 

She goes on to say more than one conversation may be needed to help children understand and feel safe.