Art Therapy Grant Changes Women's Lives - Postcards of Positivity Project Raises Awareness and Spirits

by Stu Slayen | Mar 19, 2019
“Grow through what you go through.”

“When the world says ‘give up’, hope whispers ‘try it one more time’.”

Through affirmative postcard messages like these developed and shared through a comprehensive art therapy initiative, a Jewish Foundation of Manitoba Women’s Endowment Fund grant has been making a difference for survivors of domestic abuse.

The $10,000 grant to the Western Manitoba Regional Women’s Resource Centre in Brandon allowed the centre to hire a part-time art therapist to help meet the needs of women dealing with domestic abuse. Through art therapy, many women unable to verbalize the trauma they have experienced have found their voice and opened the door to more conventional talk therapy.

“How can I put this into words? Grants like this help us keep our doors open and we are grateful that the Jewish Foundation has expressed a sincere interest in our work,” says Bobi Stupack, Director of Programming and Development. “We are doing difficult work, helping women dealing with difficult situations. To help them move through their trauma with art therapy is a beautiful thing.”

Art therapy works for many survivors of domestic abuse to promote a sense of calm, help them to re-develop a positive connection to their bodies, develop deep insights about themselves, and other benefits.

One remarkable initiative of the centre’s art therapy program has been the Postcards of Positivity project. Women served by the centre design and decorate cards with powerful messages of hope and wisdom that are shared with other survivors of domestic abuse through shelters and programs across Manitoba. 

“The project helped our women feel empowered and helped them celebrate their resilience while giving hope to others,” says Stupack.

The centre also opened its doors to the public in November for Domestic Violence Awareness Month. “People in Brandon who have never experienced domestic violence had a chance to support a total stranger with an uplifting message,” says Stupack. “It has helped us build community and build awareness around a very important issue that is not talked about enough.”

Your ongoing support made this art therapy grant possible. Please join us on May 10 at the 2019 JFM Luncheon in support of the Women's Endowment Fund to make a difference in the lives of girls and women in Manitoba.

Click here for tickets.