They've lost their homes, their toys, their friends, their relatives and, in some cases, their parents. They've travelled thousands of kilometres from war-torn Iraq or Syria to reach Germany, and they're still waiting for the journey to end.

At a migrant shelter in Passau, Germany, several children had a rare chance to express themselves through art, when each one was handed pencil crayons and a few sheets of paper to keep them occupied as they wait to be resettled. Many migrant children have been passing the time by pouring out their grief and pain in the form of drawings, which now cover a wall of the town hall where they are being sheltered.

The children in Passau are among the many thousands of migrants who are hoping to find a new life in Germany. The migrants in Passau arrived on a refugee train, and were redirected to the border town so they would not interrupt Oktoberfest celebrations in Munich. In Passau, the migrants face a nine-hour wait for officials to process their personal information and assign them to buses, which will take them to live in other parts of the country.

It's one of the final steps in a long journey for the migrant children, who still carry the emotional scars of leaving their homes and trekking across Europe.

That emotional trauma is heartbreakingly evident in the artwork taped to the wall at the Passau migrant shelter. One drawing shows a child standing next to a parent, after the parent has been shot by a police officer. Another shows a dead child, face-down on a beach, evoking the drowned Syrian migrant boy whose photo captured national attention last month. Still another simply says, "I'm sad," signed: "Boy alone."

Other pieces were more hopeful, as the child artists embraced Germany as their new home.

drawing by a child migrant in Germany

Migrant drawingWith files from CTV News' correspondent Daniele Hamamdjian