Show 141 – the Healing Power of the Arts

artMany families have found safe, effective ways to heal from trauma and live healthy, productive lives with and without mental illness. Today we talk about the Healing Power of the Arts.


Art, in its many forms, brings healing, joy, and peace. It keeps hope alive and helps survivors makes meaning out of chaos. 


This is Part 1 of 2. On December 1, 2013, we’ll be speaking with survivors of abuse who will be talking about their healing journeys using art therapy at Guelph-Wellington Women in Crisis.


This morning we have three guests in the studio: Nicole Fantin is an artist with Hospice Wellington. Judith Rosenberg and her son Jay Lefler co-founded Spark of Brilliance, an organization that provides opportunity for persons living with mental health issues to experience the expressive arts, within a supportive, understanding, community-based environment.


In April 2013, Hospice Wellington began offering Art Therapy. This expressive arts program supports palliative, grief and bereaved community members individually and in groups. Participants explore life’s journey, using both creative and narrative practice. Nicole Fantin facilitates groups for all ages using a wide variety of materials in a secure, non-threatening environment at Hospice.

Nicole says, “The journey through grief is as individual and unique as the person who encounters it. My objective is to support the encounter with gentle compassion in the development of hope and meaning making.”


The Spark of Brilliance model, recovery through discover of the arts, was conceived from a belief that healing and recovery can be kindled through the arts.

Spark of Brilliance has a presence in Guelph, Kitchener-Waterloo, North & Centre Wellington, and Orangeville.

Our guest, Judith Rosenberg aims to provide opportunities for individuals to feel empowered through artistic expression.

Her son Jay Lefler is an aspiring artist who has experienced his own mental health issues. He says,”My love of art, painting and creative expression played a huge role in my healing.”


According to Wikipedia, the word “therapy” comes from the Greek therapeia, which means ‘to be attentive to’. Art therapy provides a safe time and space for conversations to happen and for individuals to make meaning out of their lives without words. Healing should never be rushed. Personal development happens in its own time.


We explore how art is therapeutic.

Did you ever wonder just how important is a safe, supportive environment to the healing process?


Additional resources and links:

Hospice Wellington

Spark of Brilliance

Homewood Health Centre

Off Course On Campus: The Student Mental Health Crisis, CBC


Let’s keep this conversation going. Tell us about your impressions of this show.


Do you have any healing art experiences? If so, what did you discover? Please comment below or visit our FaceBook Page for frequent updates.


Broadcasted: Sunday November 17th, 2013 1100-1200 Eastern Time on CFRU 93.3 FM, Guelph, Ontario, Canada


Listen to Pod Cast (click to listen now or save this MP3 to listen later)

The Modern Chinese Dance in Quick Motion

About Wendy McDonnell

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