The Power of Art Therapy

February 12th, 2017

Kate Reisel presents The Power of Art Therapy. This program will be held at the First United Methodist Church, 1421 Spruce Street, Boulder, CO at 3:00 pm.

“Art therapy ignites the fire inside LGBT youth that refuses to let the bullies win.”

During these times of uncertainty and change in our government, the LGBT community needs as many safe places as possible to be in community and to stay connected. Art therapy, whether individual or group, is an effective and important therapy that can help LGBT youth slow down and meditate on how they see themselves fitting into the world. Art therapy has been utilized as an effective treatment modality for addressing the unique needs of LGBT youth. We know that LGBT youth are at an increased risk for depression, anxiety, and suicide 
(LGBT youth are 2-3 times more likely to attempt suicide and 1/3 of suicides that result in death are due to a crisis in sexual identity). There is increased risk of school and cyber bullying and hate crimes (many microaggressions go unnoticed yet have a lasting effect on youth), 44% of LGBT youth feel unsafe due to gender identity and 64% feel unsafe due to sexual orientation. Additionally, there is increased risk of substance abuse for LGBT youth.
Art therapy is empowering and less threatening as a therapy and outlet for youth. Collage, art journals, clay, wire, boxes, masks, colored pencils, pastels to name a few can all be used as a way to express deep emotions and to increase self-awareness. Art therapy is uniquely suited to increase resiliency while dealing with depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts. While art therapy has not received a lot of attention as effective therapy for our LGBT youth, it is becoming more recognized as an excellent way to externalize difficult emotions and increase self-awareness and problem solving.
Mary Kathryn (Kate) Reisel is a licensed clinical social worker and registered art therapist who has been working with youth and adults over the last 17 years. Her experience includes interning/working in inpatient and outpatient settings, residential, and alternative educational settings in Chicago. She obtained her MSW from Western Michigan University in 1994 and her MAAT in art therapy from The Art Institute of Chicago in 2000. Since becoming a mother in 2006, Kate moved with her family to Boulder, Colorado in 2008 and has worked as a para-educator in the BVSD schools as well as volunteering at Parenting Place as an art therapist for a single moms group. Kate founded Connected Within Art Therapy and Counseling Services LLC in 2014 and has a private practice in Old Town Lafayette, CO. Her private practice is focused on outreach to LGBT youth as well as all youth and adults managing anxiety and depression. She is passionate about empowering others to find their voice and identity through art therapy and putting words to their images. She enjoys spending time with her 11-year-old daughter and husband through biking, hiking, art making, martial arts, and music. She has an interest in mindfulness, meditation, and Buddhism. Kate’s website is and is her email address.

There will be a confidential support from TYES at 2pm at the same venue. The TYES support group is for parents and caregivers of gender expansive youth only. In order to create a safe and private setting for support needs, children are not allowed at support meetings. Childcare is currently not available. Please call (720) 443-7708 with questions.

For more information, please contact:

Rosemary Coughlin Campbell
PFLAG Leadership Coordinator
(303) 746-2808

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