Hospice Wellington’s new art therapy program paints a community picture

GUELPH – In response to the impact of the global pandemic, Hospice Wellington’s Art Therapy Program has launched a community-based therapeutic initiative, “Heart to Art,” with a priority focus on meaning and connection.

Hospice Wellington’s Heart to Art program will prepare and deliver to the community’s doorstep 100 art invitations per week over the course of 10 weeks, to the extent of 1,000 community connections in total.

Officials say the art therapy-based community initiative will focus on meaning-making activities for individuals, families or frontline teams, with opportunities to share and connect with other completed projects.

“Verbalizing difficult experiences can be challenging at times. Using art to focus on meaning, gratitude and connection to what we are trying to express has been shown to be an effective way to process and communicate,” says Nicole Fantin, art therapist at Hospice Wellington.

“I am inspired by our community to humbly offer what I can to help foster meaning-making and connection during a time that requires us to find courage and endurance in new ways.

“I hope this simple act of creativity in our community will give focus to our intentions, illuminates our motivations, and illustrates our common need for connection. In so many ways while we might be standing still, we may yet find room to grow.”

All community members are invited to engage in the Heart to Art program on a first-come, first-serve basis, to the first 100 families, or frontline workplaces that register each week, beginning on May 11.

In order to participate, a weekly registration link will be posted on the website and social media for the upcoming week’s Heart to Art for the following Monday’s home delivery. Space is limited to the first 100 registered each week.

Proper protective equipment will be worn when preparing kits and all volunteers will safely drop the kits outside of homes on delivery day.

Hospice Wellington launched its signature Art Therapy Program in 2013 and is one of eight art therapy programs serving not-for-profit organizations and charities in the province of Ontario on a full-time basis.

Fantin designs and delivers extraordinary programs and services connected to the organization, with exquisite attention to detail and intention to individuals and families facing end-of-life experiences and bereavement, officials state.

Hospice Wellington provides and promotes hospice palliative care for individuals and their families in Guelph and Wellington County.

Visit: www.hospicewellington.org for more information on the 10-bed residence and community level that operates the workshops, programs, supports and events throughout the year.