“Being creative can increase positive emotions, lesson depressive symptoms, reduce stress, decrease anxiety….” (Dr. Cathy Malchiodi 2015)
At KCA, families have been accessing Creative Therapy and Counselling for many years.
The Creative Therapy team use a range of art materials and objects to help and enhance expression of inner experience within a therapy session. Working creatively provides a vehicle with which to safely explore thoughts, ideas and emotions. Looking at the image together helps facilitate reflection, dialogue – a conversation – and communication – helping us to put language to our feelings.
We offer art therapy as a choice, and it is up to the needs and preferences of each person how much art-making will be done. Some, especially children will be making art in every session, and others will occasionally use the media – preferring to talk instead.
Because art and play-based materials and activities work with metaphor and symbol they provide an ideal medium for engaging with children, especially those who find difficulty to put things into words. The process of art or mark making can be soothing, regulating and so reduce feelings of stress. When stress is more easily understood and managed, communication within family relationships become more positive and enjoyable – impacting positively on mental health.
“My daughter is doing so much better. The relax time straight away when she comes in from school helps a lot, as this seems to be the most hectic and stressful time for her). Her siblings have also expressed how well she has been doing and how proud they are of her. We are all enjoying the peace”.
“My therapist has excellent boundaries, insight and awareness and is able to connect well with the client and knows how to move the client on gently if they choose too. She has reminded me of the tools that I have at my disposal to help myself”.
“just wanted to let you know ……….. is doing A levels and scoring A’s and B’s and would like to say ‘Thank You’ for everything you did in supporting him. Our journey will always include you and others who supported him – thank you again”.
A mother of a large family, said using the arts in the therapy had “helped her ‘symbolically’, to change the way she ‘travelled’ in life, in a more energetic and positive way”. She had “cast away some of the unwanted baggage” and now travelled more lightly and with more direction. There was enough room in the car for her kids to travel with her, too.
A mother and her adolescent son both used the Creative therapy Service. They recognized that it helped their understanding of each other. “Their ways” had improved and were communicating better – and fewer ‘explosive’ rows meant that relationships within the family improved, especially for his little sister.
Our FREE Creative therapy services are funded by John Lyons Charity and City Bridge Trust. If you would like some more information about the service or to make a referral please email firstname.lastname@example.org