• Mariana Sierra

Healing Through Art


In past episodes we have discussed non-traditional therapies. At the FRC , we strongly believe that non-traditional therapies segue to traditional therapy and can support it. 

We have partnered with different organizations in the community to provide programming in non-traditional therapies that encourages healing and resiliency. 

For this episode, we introduce you to one of our wonderful partners, Creative Kids, a local non-profit educational community-based art agency located in El Paso. 

Throughout this episode we’ll discuss the importance of providing a safe space where children can express their emotions through art. We also talk about the benefits of art therapy and how it can boost children’s mental health. 

CREATIVE KIDS- AN EL PASO PROUD ORGANIZATION

A passion for art and our community is what started Creative Kids. Drea Gates-Ingle and Stephen Ingle were having dinner one afternoon at a local Chili’s, when Stephen drew on a napkin what is now the logo of Creative Kids. What started from a napkin has now become a 22-year-old, local nonprofit that has provided a safe space for our children to learn and express feelings and emotions in the most beautiful way. 

Recently, Creative Kids has partnered with our FRC to provide a special program the Resiliency Art Project, which is available to our younger participants. In this program children  from ages 5 to 17, are encouraged to enhance and practice resiliency through art. 

Each Saturday children join a virtual art session where they are introduced to art skills through different art mediums, the use of proper art terminology and art practices.

Although this is an art session and children do learn basic art skills, Stephen shared with us during our interview that Creative Kids is not a school but rather a place where children can have fun and express what they are feeling inside through art with the support of their instructors and peers. Art can ease children’s emotions of anxiety and stress.

WHAT ARE NON-TRADITIONAL THERAPIES?

We’ve lightly talked about non-traditional therapies. However, in this episode we explore them more in depth of what they are and how beneficial they can be for many. At the FRC we are big fans of non-traditional therapies because studies show that non-traditional therapy can boost the positive effects of traditional therapy. 

Personally, my journey to healing started with non-traditional therapy. I discovered many things about myself by journaling and joining a local yoga studio. Through these practices, I discovered there were somethings I wanted to attend and discuss with a therapist or a counselor. Writing and meditation not only served as a way of taking care of my mental health, but it was my segue to traditional therapy. 

WHAT IS ART THERAPY?

Art therapy or art in general is considered a non-traditional therapy. Sometimes our mind can get too busy, especially during these unprecedented times. Through art we can find a moment of peace and a safe space to explore our feelings and emotions. Creative Kids provides this space for children in the community and its hope is to bring out the positive rather than the negative. 

Now, one of the questions I had while preparing for my interview with Stephen and Drea was—what is the difference between a regular art class and the art sessions provided through the Resiliency Art Project? Simple. The beautiful thing about these art sessions is that you don’t have to be an expert or a professional artist. 

All you’ll need is passion. If your child enjoys grabbing a brush or creating art pieces of any sort, art therapy can be for them.

NEXT STEPS TOWARDS HEALING 

We are excited to share our partnership with Creative Kids and the impact that it can have in our beautiful boarder city. 

If you are interested in enrolling your child into this program, please contact our office at (915) 775- 2783. The Resiliency Art Project has been very popular among our community members, interested participants might be waitlisted. 

Tune in to learn more about the Resiliency Art Project and art therapy. 

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For media inquiries, please contact:

Elizabeth Gamez, VP of Marketing & Communications at United Way of

El Paso County, (915) 276-7811.

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6314 Delta Dr. 

El Paso, TX 79905

PHONE

(915) 775 - 2783

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The El Paso United Family Resiliency Center has been partially funded by a grant from the American Red Cross.

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