Finding a Voice: Using Art Therapy to Reduce the Barriers to Committing to Change in the Community

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Mote, Ginger
Master of Arts in Art Therapy
This study explored the usage of art therapy with community leaders and members to instill intrinsic motivation in the area of community change. Many people involved in Systems of Care already have the motivation for change but may not have known how to make those changes. The concepts of the Stages of Change (SOC) model and motivational interviewing (MI) were used throughout this study in conjunction with art therapy. The tools used to assess change were the change plan worksheet, road drawings, and pros and cons collage. These items have been used successfully in addiction treatment for positive change and were used in this study to measure readiness for action for change. Three themes about change emerged during the study including (a) increased motivation for completed action steps, (b) processed ambivalence about change, and (c) empathy. Community barriers to change was another theme that arose during the study. Further research was recommended.