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|Project:||Art Therapy in Tajikistan|
|Program Area:||Community Mental Health|
|Date:||January 2008 - December 2008|
The aim of this project was to empower users of psychiatric services and families through the introduction of a community-based mental health care in Dushanbe, Tajikistan through an art therapy program. The art therapy intends to assist patients ease into occupational and rehabilitation processes, and is also aimed at children with mental disabilities as well as general users of mental health care.
Through the project, sixty patients are benefiting from regular art therapy sessions, which includes activities such as painting, pottery, carpentry, dance and music. The artwork created from these sessions will be organized into an art exhibition in order to help establish links with the general public and reduce stigma towards those diagnosed with a mental illness. The program also provides consultations to families on psychiatric, social and judicial issues, and involves a broad range of students from diverse fields, including medicine and art. The project also seeks to increase public awareness and highlight the positive influence of art therapy on patients through increasing interactions between the Art Institute in Dushanbe and the public.
This project represents the sole opportunity for Tajik psychiatric care users to access non-medical community based services. As a result of the consultations and the art therapy, the project hopes to initiate greater integration of clients into society through the art exhibitions and interaction with both students and teachers employed at the art institute.