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Using Arts, Cultural and Community Programming Interventions to Improve the Lives of Individuals with Concurrent Disorders

A workshop at the 20th Annual Collaborative Care Conference, Sheraton Vancouver Airport Hotel, Richmond, BC

Authors: Heather Fulton, Veralyn Chan, Laura Dosanjh, Kevin Kirkland, Shannon Nesbitt, Laura Nguyen, Savannah Mckenzie, Tiffany Stahle, Rajakumar Vannadil, & Annalisa Watters

Abstract: The inclusion of Recreation, Art, Music, Spiritual and Indigenous Cultural Care interventions, in addition to collaboration with volunteers and other community organizations can be pivotal to reducing symptoms of concurrent disorders while engaging people in recovery and assisting them to live their best, most meaningful lives. However, few helping professionals are familiar with these disciplines or how to implement such interventions in their primary care or community setting.  This session will feature a short didactic review of the basic tenets of each therapeutic approach, and then open to 45mins of an “artistic café” setting.  Participants will be free to explore different “stations” for each discipline (i.e., Recreation, Art, Music therapies; Spiritual and Indigenous Cultural Care Interventions, Volunteer/Community Engagement).  Each station will feature related work and voices of clients who are working on their recovery from severe, complex concurrent disorders.  For example, participants will be able to listen to music, read poetry, examine art, and look at medicine wheels at corresponding stations– all created by clients with lived concurrent disorders during their treatment. Professionals from each discipline will be available to discuss the interventions and approaches further, evidence behind each approach and share pragmatic knowledge gained in partnership with clients in recovery.  For example participants might discuss implementing cultural safety interventions with an Indigenous Care Coordinator.  The café will close with a discussion regarding how to apply the knowledge of both clients and professionals using/delivering these services to the audience’s own treatment settings.