A community needs assessment survey, by the local medical center, determined that mental health services in rural counties in central Vermont are not available, accessible, or affordable. Since SafeArt is located in rural Vermont, the Healing Arts ICU program, which is free for participants, has been able to reach a population that otherwise would not have access to these services.
The Healing Arts ICU group supports women who have been victims of violence and other trauma. The group provides an alternative to an often expensive stay in an institutional care facility. The average 2-week stay in a state hospital for one woman is more than $26,000 - for this amount we can support 6 women for an entire year! Instead of providing conventional talk therapy our approach uses the arts as therapy to engage the creative and sensory mind for a more holistic healing process.
We accept a maximum of 6 women into the Healing Arts ICU program at a time. This small number helps facilitate an intimate and safe space for the participants. Most of the women who are in the group are mothers, aunts, and grandmothers. Our support in their healing process provides a ripple effect often improving their relationships with their children, grandchildren, family, co-workers, and their communities at large.