The KKH Art Therapy service is part of CHAMPs, which stands for Child Life Services, Art Therapy and Music Therapy Programmes. CHAMPs aims to foster a collaborative approach to patient care and streamline access to services and coverage of referrals according to patient's needs. The team's motto is to help patients be CHAMPions of their hospital stay by reducing the gaps in supporting their psychological and emotional wellness, in addition to addressing identified needs specific to each modality.
Art Therapy is available to paediatric patients through referral by their attending doctors.
What is Art Therapy?
Art Therapy uses the visual medium of art and the creative process involved in it to help patients explore, express, understand and manage their inner feelings and emotions better. It is beneficial in addressing anxiety and psychological distress resulting from illness and hospitalisation, thus improving coping abilities and quality of life.
Art Therapy benefits people of all ages from all walks of life, with or without prior experience with art-making. Rather than focusing on creating beautiful works of art, art therapy is about creating artwork that is meaningful to the artists themselves. Through this therapeutic approach, art is used to facilitate self-expression and self-discovery in the path to healing.
Art Therapy is a gentle and enjoyable, yet powerful and effective therapeutic method to help patients gain insight into themselves and their experiences. The artwork that results from Art Therapy leaves behind a powerful “visual legacy” for the patient, which empowers the patient to be in control of and become an active part of the treatment and recovery process.
What happens in an Art Therapy session at KKH?
Art Therapy sessions are conducted in a space that is comfortable and safe space for art-making and exploration of thoughts and feelings. A variety of art media is used during each art therapy session, such as oil pastels, watercolour, clay and collage. To facilitate the therapeutic process, the patient may be given themes to work on, or allowed to simply engage in free expression using the art materials available. The end of each session will usually be dedicated to the sharing and reflection of the value and meaning of each art piece that the patient has created.
As each art piece reflects the patient‘s innermost thoughts and feelings, artworks produced during an Art Therapy session are treated with confidentiality and will not be displayed without the expressed permission of the patient. This helps to preserve the patient's sense of trust and safety in the therapeutic relationship between himself, the art and the art therapist.
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