Healing and Community
As another season cycles around again, our children have been reunited in person with teachers and peers after a long absence, old routines are returning, but the pandemic quarantine protocols have caused many to wonder about the lingering effects of social isolation on developing youth. We have worried about academic progress, but also social-emotional well being. So much about being human depends on socialization, interactions with others, collaborating and cooperating. We know that social and emotional development is foundational to our cognitive learning. As Plato said: "All learning has an emotional base."
Now we are told that the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, the Children’s Hospital Association, and the US Surgeon General have declared a national emergency in youth mental health. A new report noted how the pandemic intensified mental health issues that were already widespread by the spring of 2020. The news comes as no surprise to some of us. You or your child may have been on a waiting list for services, or you are noticing more of your child's peers are struggling and seeking help too. What do we do next?
Rooted in the philosophy of "bringing the human back in human services", ARTrelief has always recognized the importance of community and creative connection. During the these challenging years we have worked hard to keep our in-person services and groups operating and safe. Groups especially are powerful during a time of post pandemic and social fragmentation. Therapeutic groups provide opportunities to practice self-expression, develop self-awareness, and accept support from others. They inspire feelings of universality, connection, and hope. They are also more affordable for the consumer, and can limit service waiting-list times.
As vaccination numbers increase and safety protocols prove effective, we have initiated even more group activities.
T(w)een Studio: Expressive Arts Therapy Group for T(w)eens Thursdays 4:45-6p
Expressive Arts Matinee for Early Childhood: 2022 dates TBD, the group will be held on Saturdays 9:30-11:30am
ArtClub for ages 5-12 meets weekly on Saturdays from 10-12
Therapeutic Role-Playing Group for anxiety in preteens ages 10-12 Wednesdays 5-6:30
IDENTITY: a group for LGBTQIA + community teens, Saturdays 2:20-4:30
Art of Parenting: an 8-week virtual workshop supporting parenting strategies, challenges, and solutions. Ongoing, next date TBD
Sing-a-long for adults with developmental disabilities and chronic illness
We also support the work and well-being of our own clinical and therapeutic mentor team by providing opportunities to connect to self and connect in groups throughout the work-week. Together we meet in a weekly yoga practice group, share expressive arts warm up activities for team-building, and provide clinical support with group supervision. We have also added student interns to our therapeutic mentor staff to extend our learning, creating and connecting mission.
We invite you to join us, explore our group offerings, and contact us with any questions about individual support for you, your child, or your family. We look forward to connecting and growing with you.
Happy Holidays from the ARTrelief team!
Amy Bebergal, LCSW