As an art therapist, I have had opportunities to build highly unique relationships with a wide array of individuals. I have enjoyed my work with children, adolescents and adults with varying needs such as autism, medical issues/chronic illness, mental illness, addiction and HIV/AIDS and Veterans of war. These experiences have contributed toward my growth as a professional and as a person. I have been witness to countless obstacles that people face, and seen how individuals deal with them in their own unique ways for even more unique reasons. On the day cARTwheel team member Geoff Green asked of my interest in working with the CARTwheel Initiative team, I was immediately excited about this new opportunity to use my skills and interests in a uniquely productive way.
Over the past several months our team, comprised of a group of eight creatively motivated and caring individuals, has been working toward a common goal; to irrevocably and positively change the lives of the children we will be meeting. Since that day, I have enjoyed working with the cARTwheel team members to impart important art therapy principles and techniques that will help ensure the success of the project. I am contributing valuable feedback on the workshop curriculum through the lens of art therapy principles to meet the unique needs of the children. I am teaching art therapy skills to the team members such as how to offer the children a safe outlet for their feelings in a structured session. The team hopes to leave new art making skills with the children so that they can potentially have additional tools to cope with their struggles and develop in a more healthy way. I am also eager to work with the instructors in Sri Lanka to further their continuation of assisting the children with using these new found skills.
I am confident that the project will benefit the children and their community in many ways. They will see that art is a useful tool that can convey even the things that are difficult to say. They will use art to express ideas in ways that can help them feel good about themselves and connect with their community and the world at large. They will see that there are people who care for their well-being, no matter how far apart we live.
Looking forward to sharing more of our progress with you as we move ahead!!!!