ART RETREAT EXCHANGE PROGRAMME 3
In 2017, TODAY IS THE DAY SINGAPORE organised the third rendition of The Art Retreat Exchange Programme, an art initiative that emphasises the use of art therapy to treat Fukushima children who are suffering from complex trauma and internal radiation.
The programme took place from 23 July – 6 August 2017 and involved 20 children aged 9 to 12 years old. Art therapists from LASALLE College of the Arts and New York University designed treatment-specific art therapy classes for the children. Besides the art therapy classes, the children also participated in a number of workshops and activities in the afternoon. At the end of the programme, the children’s artworks were displayed at an exhibition at LASALLE, which was also open to the public. The artworks were also shown at travelling exhibitions around Japan and New York.
Many parents of the children have articulated the improvement in their children’s behavior due to their participation in the programme. In addition, research conducted by NYU’s art therapist Toshiko Kobayashi on TITDS’ Art Retreat Exchange Programme has also indicated a positive improvement in the children;s behaviour. More importantly, Kobayashi highlighted the exigency for continued trauma care for the children, as the effectiveness of art therapy is maximized when the treatment takes place on a prolonged basis.
Thus, even after the children returned to Fukushima, follow-up art therapy sessions were conducted to ensure that they receive continued treatment. Parents were also invited to participate in the therapy sessions alongside their children.
Fukushima Prefecture Association in Singapore
BRANDING AND DESIGN