Therapeutic activities are provided through various mediums in MPA. Acknowledging that our residential population has a variety of deficits and strengths, the activities are designed to suit the varied requirements, goals being encouragement and motivation.
Our residential population has functional limitations arising from the psychiatric disabilities. Some of the limitations are mood fluctuations, difficulties in sustaining concentration, remembering and understanding, and interacting or relating.
Along with the various activities, a behavior modification program has been initiated in the form of token economy system, so that every activity attended or performed will be noted and rewarded with points which are encashed. We have extended the ‘reward approach’ to activities in the tailoring unit.
The experience of building self-esteem and restore personal healing through the provision of Art as a therapy is promoted. Motivation is initiated through the use of directives.
Type of Art Work provided are:
- Flat Art – Use of Large paper. Not so stiff for creative expression
- Montage – Use of Thicker material, Magazine cut outs, Buttons, etc
- Construction work – Assemblage, Collage, Pottery, Paper machie, Model Magic (Plasticine)
Group therapy in MPA is delivered in a group format, and it includes Cognitive behavioural therapy or Interpersonal therapy. Topics relevant to each resident and their family dynamics or behaviors are selected for introspection and discussion. Some of the topics introduced are on Life Skills, Assertiveness, Hope, Difference Between Want and Me, Responsibility, Goals, etc.
Yoga in MPA is a method by which self awareness and tranquility are attained, especially through a course of exercises and postures designed to promote physical and spiritual well-being. This was introduced as early as 1960′s.
Dance or Movement Therapy
This is a form of therapy in which the residents are encouraged to express their feelings through dance or movement.
In some sessions, there is re-creating of music in which the residents sing pre-composed music. This kind of music experience includes: learning how to produce vocal sounds, imitating musical phrases, learning to sing by rote, participating in sing-alongs like the karaoke singing.
Some sessions involve listening; Eg. Anthakshari session in which the residents take in and react to live or recorded music. Listening experience focuses on the physical, emotional, intellectual, aesthetic, or spiritual aspects of the music.
Tailoring: Working as a group in a comfortable environment with fine textured and multi-colored materials is very motivating and soothing. The use of a variety of threads and fabric and colors lifts up the mood, and the utility of the articles being made also brings meaning to the person involved. This physical investment is translated into income generation which further empowers every participant. Some of the articles being made are handcrafted and embroidered aprons, baby clothes and cushions.
Cookery: Preparation of food is a life skill that all residents are provided with, as an opportunity to learn. Key techniques are taught so that each resident will be able to prepare his/her own food from scratch, using fresh ingredients. As an incentive, they get to eat and enjoy what they cook.
Sports & games:
Olympiad: The MPA Olympiad has been designed to provide opportunities to every resident to participate and receive recognition.
Poetry Class & Creative Writing: Writing of thoughts and feelings in an imaginative way is a medium that helps our residents to express their unique impressions and perceptions. As part of social inclusion, ex-residents with creative skills have been encouraged to hold classes for other residents. This activity has brought self-esteem, confidence, and satisfaction among the community group as they see their peers being empowered.
Laughter Yoga: This was first initiated in 2011 in MPA by a visiting Certified Laughter Yoga Teacher & Leader Mr. Michael Stretch from UK. He shared about the benefits of Laughter Yoga in terms of better health, improvement of mood and personal life, enhanced self- confidence and communication skills, better quality of life, being able to laugh in the face of challenges and development of a positive attitude. Professional staff and trained leaders among the residential community continue to hold this activity every week.
Gardening – Horticultural Therapy: As a therapeutic intervention, Horticultural therapy was introduced to enhance well-being among the residents. Plant related activities are encouraged to promote emotional healing. To plant and grow edible vegetables and herbs in a supportive environment brings satisfaction among the community.
All these activities are supported by Therapists and Volunteers.