Expressive Arts and Play Therapy for OVC

Description of the Training

The Expressive Arts and Play Therapy (EAPT) training focuses on use of creative and hopeful approaches in child play therapy to address loss induced child trauma and grief. Trauma, loss and grief in children is often unable to be expressed in words, and as such, this training makes use of a range of creative arts and play techniques, including symbolic play interventions, therapeutic use of symbols, drawing and storytelling strategies during the workshop. These and other specific intervention techniques that assist carers to facilitate gradual healing while and honouring children’s resilience and strengths are presented and illustrated. Participants under training are expected to be able to use these back in their respective work with children. The art and play therapy strategies are anchored in developmental psychology research and employ culturally and socially sensitive approaches that are applicable in local context.

Target Audience

EAPT training is applicable to professionals at all skills level including social workers, child counsellors, pastoral and family counsellors, parents, child caregivers, pre-school teachers, school counsellors and other people working or intending to work with children. It is highly encouraged that training applicants have some form of background with regards to basic counselling skills.

Training Facilitators and Methods of Training Delivery

The training course is facilitated by a multidisciplinary team of professionals including a psychologist, clinical social workers, family therapists, occupational therapist a visual, music and dance Artist all of whom have extensive experience in working with children.This training is highly participatory and is conducted in simple English, and local languages for the benefit of both the trainees and children they will be working with in their respective workstations.

Key Areas Covered and Duration

The EAPT Training is delivered over a 2 – 5 days period with the following specific topics covered by the end of the workshop.

  • What is Expressive Arts and play therapy?
  • Why use expressive arts and play therapy techniques?
  • Age – appropriate, creative and hopeful approaches in play therapy techniques:
    • To address loss induced trauma and grief.
    • To build self confidence and self esteem
  • Specific strategies:
    • To honour strengths without invalidating feelings and suffering
    • To facilitate hope while recognising when hope can be dangerous
  • Child development and using the natural language of children
  • Expressive Arts for Diagnostic and Therapeutic Purposes
  • Caring for the carer
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