Three-year therapeutic program with Kingston City Council pays dividends

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Three-year therapeutic program with Kingston City Council pays dividends

November 21, 2022

A three-year therapeutic program with Kingston City Council has made a massive difference in the lives of local children and mothers, according to Julia, Emerge Therapeutic Services Manager.

“The positive impact this program has had on individual lives is testament to the success of this partnership. We delivered 1002 daily sessions over 39 months to 365 women and children,” Julia said.

“We continue to receive requests from those who took part wanting to continue to be involved, as well as requests from others who have heard about the program.

The program began in 2018 when the Kingston City Council funded Little Sparkz and other therapeutics arts programs for children. The program, run out of the Chelsea Heights Community Centre, included the use of Matlda Robot. Despite therapists having to switch from face-to-face delivery in 2020 to tele-practice and online because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the demand remained high.

“We have added music, dance, and drama into the program which has been run by three qualified arts therapists and an art therapy student,” Julia said.

Every day children took part in art making around themes including safety and security, boundary regulation, social skills, tolerance for negative emotions, self-identity, respect for others and confidence.

“One of the highlights was when the children met with volunteers from the Chelsea Heights Community Garden to plant broad beans and coriander, pick and taste herbs, feed chickens and tend to the worm farm,” Julia said.

“Being outside and getting their hands dirty was just the therapy the children needed.”

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