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Program: Creative Expression Sessions
Demographic: 14- 18 yr old girls
Objective: Expression through ART
Schedule: Weekly sessions throughout the year
Our Program and Facilitators.
Throughout the year, various professional creatives join the sessions and teach the girls to utilise a particular medium or technique. Mediums include painting, drawing, clay modelling, photography and textiles. Each session has 12-16 girls.
Girls are encouraged to listen to themselves and their emotions, using the medium to express their feelings and ideas that they might not be able to say in words. The guest professional creative will then begin workshopping the techniques and the girls will have time to practice and create. During this time [our facilitators] moves around the room, encouraging the girls in their creativity and discussing their designs with them. This is done with a non-judgemental, inquisitive attitude and often leads to the girls sharing about current difficulties in their lives and occasionally in the past. If appropriate, the girls may share in small groups about their artwork.
Throughout these Creative Expression Sessions, girls are given the opportunity to be engaged, transformed and strengthened by expressing ‘self’ through art. Further, these young girls have the ability to communicate their feelings in a constructive manner while inspiring self-motivation, independence and communication.
Staff have seen considerable improvement amongst the girls who participate in the art therapy sessions, particularly in their areas of self-confidence and willingness to communicate. Over time, we have noticed lower levels of anxiety and social isolation, and less self-destructive behaviour. Having this creative outlet gives these girls a place to channel their emotions, both positive and negative, and is especially helpful when dealing with traumatic events or ongoing issues that are difficult to talk about. The professional creatives provide a fun way to engage in art therapy as well as being positive role models to the girls. Some girls who once struggled from severe low self-esteem and engaged in self-destructive behaviours now display a sense of confidence through the joy of creating art.