20th International Congress of the European Society for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry



Quality of life (QoL) in children is often examined with distinct approaches that have rarely been discussed jointly. However, recent findings indicate that QoL in early childhood is a multifactorial concept and it should concern children’s physical, mental, social, and emotional development. Failure to prevent risk during early childhood can have impact on individuals’ long-term functioning and QoL later in life. This is a case study of the writing and use of science – based fairy tales as a transdisciplinary prevention tool in preschool settings in Cyprus, used by professionals to promote QoL in children by focusing on four health aspects including mental, physical, emotional and social health. Five different preschool settings in Cyprus accommodating children 2-5 years old, have been trained and currently using the fairy tales as an innovative tool to prevent risk and promote QoL in children. Professionals use the fairy tales through interactive activities including: 1) interpretation of the story content, the behaviour of characters and their actions, 2) illustrations, crafts, free play and 3) music-kinetic performances. Current outcomes suggest fairy tales to be an effective way of accessing children’s imagination, conflicts, mental health issues, fears and unsettling or painful experiences, and a user-friendly tool to identify transient problems and unmet needs, that might lead to clinical implications in a later stage. We highlight the benefits of developing and using more sustainable and cost-effective tools to prevent risk and promote QoL in early childhood by training professionals to adopt a transdisciplinary approach for advancing children’s well-being.