Teapot Trust has been awarded £8,500 from the College’s grant-making programme the HOPE Foundation. These vital funds will enable the charity to provide crucial art therapy services for young Rheumatology patients and their families, who normally attend the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow.
Teapot Trust was swift in its response to COVID-19 and moved its one-to-one art therapy sessions online, using secure technology. Their art therapist based in Glasgow, Dr Patricia Watts, has been working with children and families remotely. Patricia said:
“It’s really important that we’re able to continue providing support to children, young people and their families. Art therapy has become even more vital, as many of the children and families we support are experiencing increased anxiety due COVID-19 and this is on top of the challenges that come with having a chronic condition.”
Teapot Trust art therapists provide a safe space for children and young people to explore their feelings and express themselves, as well as providing creative interventions to help manage anxiety and build resilience. One of the many potential benefits of art therapy is improved confidence. When asked recently about the support he receives from Teapot Trust in Glasgow, a 15-year-old young person said:
“Art therapy has helped me to get my voice back and help my voice to be heard by professionals.”
The young man’s Carer also shared his gratitude:
“Art Therapy has been life changing – we have a very different child now. It’s a lot easier to speak to him about his condition and medication, he opens up about it a lot more.”
Children with chronic conditions, such as Rheumatic conditions like Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA), Lupus and Juvenile Dermatomyositis, often struggle with their mental health and wellbeing. In addition, many have weakened immune systems, meaning that they are in the high-risk category for COVID-19.
Teapot Trust CEO, Sarah Randell, said:
“Our art therapy support has become even more vital, as the children and families we help are still hugely affected by coronavirus. We are determined to continue supporting children, young people and their family members in Glasgow and beyond. We’re so grateful to HOPE Foundation for their wonderful donation. Without support from individuals and organisations like theirs, our important work simply would not be possible.”
Mike McKirdy, Chair of HOPE Foundation at the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow said:
“The HOPE Foundation was established to make a positive difference to the health of people living in challenging circumstances, so we’re delighted to be able to support the fantastic work of the Teapot Trust this year. Our Fellows and Members have seen first-hand the positive difference that art therapy can make to the lives of these young patients and their families, so it’s a privilege to be able to play a part in providing this vital service.”
In addition to online art therapy, and to keep children creatively occupied at home, a suite of resources developed by Teapot Trust is available on its website. Fun activities, task sheets and video clips from the charity’s art therapists are available, which the charity hopes all families with children will find this useful – particularly at this challenging time.
Main photo is by Rob McDougall