"Heeling through art, helping through medicine, bringing joy to the lives of children and families."
This semester, we have ~60 student volunteers volunteering in the UNC Hospitals weekly, doing everything from arts/crafts in the waiting rooms, to strumming guitar with pediatric patients, to journaling with cancer patients.
Our job is to make people escape a little, forget they are in the hospital: whether it's from the moment they walk in and we have a dance performance happening on the stage in the lobby, while they are sitting in the waiting room and we're making animal masks, or they are sick in bed all day and we bring a little dose of art and music for the pain (and boredom). We are people who like art or medicine or both, but especially the idea of incorporating art into the healing process. We are a group of artists, dancers, singers, musicians, clowns, pre-health students, and everything in between.
The club portion allows individuals to further develop their art therapy skills and gain such experience through volunteering in the community.
We have twice-monthly general body meetings for students to about art therapy, how to use art in philanthropic and healing ways, and ways to educate the community on the idea of art and medicine. In addition, we usually take part in our own form of art therapy. Members are led in some kind of therapy technique or project which alleviates their mind from school work and other stresses of college. We have all come to understand the benefits of taking time to use our own art therapy techniques for ourselves!
We have volunteer partnerships with community organizations such as the Ronald McDonald House, Chapel Hill Carrboro City Schools, and The Charles House Senior Center. Members can also gain hospital experience through volunteer opportunities in the Pediatric Playroom at UNC Children's Hospital.