Impact of Q1 2019 Art Workshops
Thank you to everyone who helped create the healing impact to our community through art healing workshops this first quarter of 2019!
I have had the pleasure to teach 22 art workshops since January and we have been able to serve staff and / or clients of prison reentry, multiple trafficking organizations, DV and Sexual Assault shelters, homeless teenagers, pregnant moms (adult and teens) and we have served over 150 participants and over 20 partner agencies in our community.
And we are not finished yet. We remaining workshops scheduled in April and we will go over our limit to serve the community! The demand has been exciting and transformative. In over 100 surveyed participants, 95% said they believed they made another step toward healing through this activity - in a brief two-hour art healing workshop. That is impressive results!
As an expert working with survivors of violence and abuse for the last decade, I have watched the impact on their lives after the healing is to begin. Even decades after abuse in a person’s life can leave them feeling loss, shame and powerlessness. Equipping people to begin to heal in a brief window of time through art has been a wonderful experience for me as an educator and a women dedicated to healing trauma after violence.
With your help we will be able to continue to offer these workshops for agencies’ staff, clients, employer team retreats and those in communities seeking opportunities to heal.
To learn more about our workshop, send me an email and we will reach back to you at firstname.lastname@example.org
We have been able to collect 107 participant surveys in Q1 and are helping us define the impact of this training. Here is a preview of the results:
Stronger than Espresso was able to provide this vital training due to a Community Grant from the Junior League of Collin County Stronger than Espresso was able to provide art healing workshops for survivors of domestic violence, abuse and provide vital self care to staff and clients of local agencies serving families in need!
Many ask me, How Does Art Heal?
How Art Heals.
Art is a language that gives a voice to how we feel inside. It can help us heal our pain and reconnect with ourselves and others. It allows for a window of time to get in touch with our authentic feelings – even if these feelings we hide from the world and often ourselves.
As we experience pains and disappointments the feelings can be debilitating and devasting, and compound especially if we come from a home with violence and abuse. We may try to ignore or hide our feelings, so we can move on or wear a mask signaling everything is okay. Over time ignoring the feelings can leave us numb, disconnected and conflicted about our authentic feelings. We may have held them back for so long, that we become afraid to be vulnerable or fear we will be overwhelmed.
Art is a safe and simple way to express feelings. Art can go slowly; at your own pace. Art tells a story that goes far beyond any words. Diving inside we get in touch with our authentic self and engage with feelings and painful parts of our story that language does not have the power to convey. Especially pain from trauma, it can be overwhelming, and words rarely capture the true intensity of the experiences.
Art allows us to tap into our artistic selves and creative right-brain that opens a world of self-discovery. When we engage in art, we stop thinking and start moving toward expression. The language of the senses and pre-verbal memories are activated. We are able to better access these memories and express them because art has the power to penetrate the subconscious layers of our mind.
Art brings us to the here and now. Art is a safe and simple way teaching us how to be present with ourselves while collaborating with others.
Art can heal trauma in 4 ways:
1. Trauma seems to have no boundaries. The edges of the paper provide boundaries and a container for images and emotions to be expressed.
2. The physical act of making marks and repetitive movements activates a part of the brain called the cerebellum vermis, which stimulates affect regulation. This begins to contain negative emotions in the right limbic area where traumatic memory is stored.
3. As the image appears the left hemisphere is activated to assess the situation logically. The right hemisphere expresses its internal reality through the image. Both hemispheres are online and so the trauma is expressed without re-experiencing it.
4. Externalizing the image puts trauma in a time and place. It helps the brain realize that this happened then, not now. It allows for the mind to begin to process the idea, “I am safe now”, which deactivates the amygdala from flooding the limbic area of the right hemisphere with stress hormones. Art can reset the amygdala to here-and-now orientation.
How can I get involved? Email email@example.com to find out how you can get involved with Stronger than Espresso’s programs.