This healing is what the staff of the Orange County Rape Crisis Center hopes to do with the center’s art therapy workshop this Sunday, a one-time support group meeting designed to help sexual violence survivors develop tools for self-care.
“We’ve had an overwhelming response for the workshop, especially in the past week,” Bethany Wichman-Buescher, the center’s programs director, said in an email.
She said Sunday’s program will employ artistic mediums that will be easily accessible to participants. She said she wants people who attend the workshop to be able to express positivity about their journey to healing without any barriers.
The center has been using art therapy for more than 10 years, Wichman-Buescher said. Last year, the center served more than 100 people with 20 groups and workshops.
Art is a great tool for trauma survivors dealing with their past, Wichman-Buescher said.
“The way that trauma is stored in our brains and bodies can make it difficult to make sense of, let alone verbalize,” she said. “Arts and crafts have been found to be an effective mode of expression and processing.”
The rape crisis center isn’t the only area organization that offers art therapy to local residents.
The N.C. Art Therapy Institute is a Carrboro-based nonprofit that offers trainings and workshops to professionals, as well as art therapy for groups and individuals.