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Therapies at Search: Pets, Art, Dance and More!

When asked to picture a therapy setting, most people immediately visualize the traditional Freudian image of the client laying on a therapist’s couch and the therapist sitting with a notebook and pen. This visual couldn’t be more different than the counseling approach at Search!

The Counseling and Therapy department is excelling at delivering some of the most innovative, creative, and comprehensive services to all of our consumers at Search. No longer are people being denied access to counseling or therapy because they are non-verbal, have difficulty sitting still, or can’t verbally identify their feelings or experiences.

Our Counseling and Therapy team are committed to finding the best way to serve everyone. To achieve this, we have added many non-traditional therapeutic approaches including art therapy, jewelry making, sensory objects, exercise, dance, yoga, music, psychodrama, sign language, picture boards, iPads, and even therapy dogs. These creative counseling methods help facilitate consumers in improving their expression, communication, and coping skills.

Consumers use technology, such as the iPads to give them a voice, connect with other people, mix music and sounds, or to experience different auditory, visual, or tactile stimulation. Art Therapy uses art experiences as a space to express one’s self, to exert some independence in their pieces, make their own choices, or collaborate with others. Yoga, Movement, and Sensory groups work to increase people’s coping skills, bring awareness to their breathing, and use physical stimulation in a pro-social manner to promote self-awareness as well as awareness of one’s surroundings and those in it. In Pet Therapy, consumers work on connecting to the dogs, building relationships, and assertiveness skills through giving simple commands to the dogs. And of course, the best part is giving the dogs treats when they do well! Don’t you agree that these activities sound much more exciting than the traditional way of doing therapy?

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