Information provided by Chamberlain’s Youth Services
What better way to break down barriers, have some fun and learn important skills than working mental therapy into art projects?! That was the goal of CYS Mental Health Rehabilitation Specialist and local artist Dustin Kinsley. Dustin developed the program and with a 2021 Arts Express Grant award from the San Benito County Arts Council, is conducting weekly “Executive Function and Life Skills Groups” with the Chamberlain’s children.
The sessions are a form of group rehabilitation, which encompasses learning executive/life skills, fostering perseverance, time management, organizational skills, an increased working memory, flexibility, self-control, attention span and ability to plan ahead. Students are learning to use the visual arts in drawing, painting, and sculpting and collaborative group assemblage.
“We are thankful for this special grant from the Arts Council to allow me to conduct these vital sessions for the children. My goal is to replace the kids’ negative behaviors and coping skills with positive forms of expression they will use as they grow into adolescent and adulthood, making them better citizens of society in day to day life,” says Dustin.
Director of Specialty Mental Health Services Melanie Davis added “This program Dustin created has offered the youth we serve another excellent path to help our kids. We thank the Arts Council for granting us the funds to make Dustin’s program a reality.”