Local Providers Encourage Art Therapy For Youth | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

: News

Local Providers Encourage Art Therapy For Youth

Play associated audio
Deborah Bunkley of The Potomac Art Therapy Association works with children on National Children's Mental Health Awareness Day.
SAMHSA
Deborah Bunkley of The Potomac Art Therapy Association works with children on National Children's Mental Health Awareness Day.

By Rebecca Sheir

A new study suggests children with behavioral or emotional problems, who receive age-appropriate mental-health services, are more likely to complete high school and live independently.

Some local care providers say art therapy can be a key component of those services.

Deborah Bunkley is President of The Potomac Art Therapy Association. At an event celebrating Mental Health Month, she's working with a group of school children.

"What we've asked them to do is with the crayons," says Bunkley. "Just draw how they're feeling today."

Dr. Gary Blau is a clinical psychologist with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, or SAMHSA. SAMHSA's new study indicates a drop in behavioral and emotional problems in a third of children who receive mental-health services, such as art therapy.

"The idea of talking to a very young child, they may be better able to express themselves through a different kind of an art medium," says Blau.

Deborah Bunkley says art also can bridge communication gaps in families.

"Whether parents just can no longer talk to their children, the children don't know how to voice, ya know, what they need to voice, the art gives them both a verbal and visual tool to kind of start that conversation," she says.

Which in turn, she says, can start a more successful and productive life as children develop and grow.

NPR

How To Sell Diverse Books: A Bookstore Owner's Advice

It's not news that the publishing world isn't very diverse. But over on the other side of the industry, how do owners of neighborhood bookstores try to sell books for or about people of color?
NPR

Can Quinoa Take Root On The 'Roof Of The World'?

Quinoa, once a homebody crop, crossed the Atlantic for the first time this century. Now the Food and Agriculture Organization has a hunch it can thrive in Central and Southwest Asia.
NPR

Senate Control May Swing On North Carolina's Unpopularity Contest

Democratic incumbent Kay Hagan wants voters to punish her GOP challenger Thom Tillis, the speaker of the state House, for unpopular laws. Tillis wants to aim anger toward the president at Hagan.
NPR

Islamic State Uses Online Strategies To Get Its Message Out

Experts say the videotaped killing of journalist James Foley is part of a broader propaganda strategy by Islamist militants. The group, the Islamic State, has become a master of the video medium.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.