Thursday, August 13, 2015

Feds Seek Dance, Poetry, Art, Music Therapy For Parolees

     The federal agency that oversees individuals on probation, parole or supervised release in Washington, DC is looking to expand options for "counseling and behavioral interventions" for offenders under its charge. The Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency for the District of Columbia (CSOSA) is seeking a contractor to conduct "expressive therapies" in an "integrated way to foster human growth, development, and healing" to offenders who may also be involved in "group interventions focused on changing criminal thinking, anger management, substance use, education, and employment skills development."
     Contractors offering therapies utilizing art, music, dance, drama, poetry and creative writing are expected to help develop a "variety of verbal and non-verbal expression in order to assist participants in exploring and potentially transforming emotional and social issues" that may be impediments to a successful transition back into society.
     CSOSA has provided extensive descriptions of the therapies under consideration:
Art Therapy - encourages clients to use art media, images, sound, digital photography, videography, computer-generated images, and the creative process as part of a therapeutic process to reconcile emotional conflicts, foster self-awareness, develop social skills, manage behavior, solve problems, reduce anxiety. 
Music Therapy - provides clients with activities geared toward creating music, music production, singing, moving to, and or listening to music.  These activities provide clients with opportunities to express themselves in verbal and non-verbal ways in order to increase motivation to change and engage in activities that promote education or healing. 
Drama Therapy - uses a drama/theater process, products and associations to achieve therapeutic goals.  Drama therapy provides clients with opportunities to tell his or her story to solve a problem, achieve a catharsis, extend the depth and breadth of inner experience, and increase flexibility in ways to address personal challenges. 
Dance/Movement Therapy - uses movement, dance, and other forms of physical activity to help clients draw a connection between body and mind.  These techniques are intended to help clients increase mind-body awareness so that they may use movement to facilitate healthy feeling, cognition, and behavior. 
Poetry/Creative Writing Therapy - relies on reading, discussing, and creating poetry or other forms of literature to help clients gain understanding of their feelings, develop empathy, enhance motivation, clarify personal goals, and identify alternative solutions to common challenges in personal behavior and relationships. 
Integrated arts (also known as multimodal) therapy - involves two or more expressive therapies to foster awareness, encourage emotional growth, and enhance relationship with others.  While it emphasizes the interrelatedness of the arts, it integrates a variety of activities that may consist of any of the aforementioned types of expressive therapy.
     CSOSA is an executive branch agency that handles offender supervision for Washington, DC, coordinating with the DC Superior Court and the US Parole Commission.

Note: A version of this post first appeared at The Weekly Standard.

No comments:

Post a Comment