14th July, 2021
I am the clinical lead for MATTS at Excel Fostering and my core therapeutic modality is Art Psychotherapy. MATTS is a service we are able to offer young people/children coming into foster care, who may need extra support and would benefit from different types of therapy. We have a variety of therapists, each specialising in their own field involved in delivering our MATTS programme.
Art therapy is a form of psychotherapy that uses art media as its primary mode of communication and expression. Art is not used as a diagnostic tool but more as a medium to focus on emotional issues which may be confusing and distressing.
Art therapists work with young people, children, adults, and the elderly. People can have a wide range of difficulties, disabilities, or diagnoses. These include mental health, emotional or behavioural issues, learning or physical disabilities, life-limiting conditions, neurological conditions, and physical illnesses.
Art therapy is provided individually or in groups, depending on a person's needs. It is not a lesson in art or a recreational activity, but the sessions can be enjoyable. There is no need to have any previous experience or expertise in art.
My main approach to therapy is relational. I focus on the relationship as the main vehicle through which I would hope to facilitate meaningful and positive change. In art therapy we use the images to help us think about our relationships with others, ourselves and the world around us.
I have mainly worked with young people, children and their families and carers in the NHS community and inpatient services, and through adoption and fostering services. I have worked with adults and young people with complex trauma, severe mental health difficulties and eating disorders. I teach at various universities across the UK and Europe and am a supervisor for other health professionals and training arts therapists.
You can find out more about Art Psychotherapy at www.baat.org. I am a full member of the British Association of Art Therapists (BAAT).
I am a registered allied health and psychological professional – my registration is with The Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). www.hcpc-uk.org.
I love watersports and I collect Alice in Wonderland books!
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