Help and Emergency Response, Inc – located in Portsmouth, VA – 757-485-1445
Fax (757) 485-0883 • 24-HOUR HOTLINE (757) 485-3384
Art Therapy is available to the women and children at the H.E.R. Shelter to help them cope with the stress and changes caused by being in the shelter. Art Therapy allows self expression through a creative means and can be used to address specific needs of clients who have experienced domestic violence in their life.
Art Therapy Services offered at the H.E.R. Shelter include:
Assessment: Women and children ages 5 and older will receive an art therapy assessment. Assessments help determine the developmental level of a client, screen for abuse, determine what defense mechanisms are being used in order to promote healthy coping mechanisms, screen for learning disorders, and determine the client’s strengths.
Individual Art Therapy Sessions: Individual art therapy sessions are held with each child weekly to help work through trauma, adjust to the shelter setting, to promote adherence to structure and recognition and respect of boundaries, and to promote healthy coping mechanisms.
Group Art Therapy Sessions: Children’s Support Group is held weekly. The purpose of the group is to promote healthy empathy between group members, to help children express their feelings in a safe setting and learn from responses given by other children, and to allow for observation of each child’s social skills and interactions with other children.
Family Art Therapy: Family art therapy services are offered to families to assess issues and various concerns various family members have in relation to abuse and changes the family is undergoing. Family art therapy sessions allow for mother and child interaction and help empower the mother and promote healthy restructuring of the family.
I am so happy to read this summary of art therapy services for children and families at this shelter. Having worked with domestic violence for more than two decades, it is about time that more people understand the value of art therapy in work with people in trauma and crisis.
Cathy Malchiodi, PhD, ATR-BC, LPCC
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