Jeanne C. Marsh, PhD, MSW, George Herbert Jones Distinguished Service Professor, University of Chicago, School of Social Service Administration
For helping professionals working with severely traumatized children and adolescents - those who may be victims of physical abuse, sexual abuse, removal from the home or sex trafficking - Dawn D'Amico, LCSW, PhD, offers clinically-validated, clinically-sophisticated exercises (including case examples and implementation instructions) designed to establish rapport, safety and support. The highly ingenious and practical exercises are organized to promote therapeutic growth in three important areas of self-expression, coping and positive thinking, and offer state-of-the-art strategies certain to enable growth, development and a sense of being understood among traumatized clients.
Julia Ostendorf, MD, FAAP, 25 years in general pediatrics practice, clinical instructor PA program
A must-have for clinicians working with children. Dr. D'Amico has put together a fabulous collection of simple, effective activities with examples. The book is easy to read and should be easy to use! I anticipate using these techniques in practice and sharing the book with fellow practitioners. I am enthusiastic about art and the potential for healing!
Breanne M. Bucher, Attorney at Law, Walden & Schuster, S.C., Juvenile Law Section Chair – Waukesha County Bar Association
As an attorney who regularly works with children in the capacity of a Guardian ad Litem in both juvenile and family law matters, I found this book exceptionally helpful. Oftentimes, and as Dr. D'Amico points out, children who have been through traumatic life experiences are hesitant to open up and discuss these events - especially with a stranger. These exercises are great "ice breakers" to use in an effort to avoid further traumatizing these children, and instead giving them a safe environment to express their feelings and begin the healing process. I highly recommend this book and plan to use many of these exercises in the near future.
Sion Kim Harris, PhD, Co-Director, Center for Adolescent Substance Abuse Research, Boston Children's Hospital, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School
Trauma experienced in childhood or adolescence is a major contributor to the development of a substance use disorder, one of the leading public health problems of today. Through this book, Dr. D'Amico has gifted the world with a treasure trove of developmentally-sensitive, easy-to-use tools for working with severely traumatized children and adolescents to support their healing. Drawing on her decades of clinical experience as well as practical ingenuity, Dr. D'Amico has created a valuable toolbox for youth-serving professionals full of activities that are likely to be enjoyable for both youth and professional, and that can be implemented using common supplies, or recycled objects.
Jenna Saul, MD, DFAACAP, CEDS, Clinical Assistant Professor, Medical College of Wisconsin Department of Psychiatry
Therapists and other healing professionals will find this book to be an invaluable resource for engaging children and adolescents in a hands-on and creative way to nurture a strong therapeutic alliance, enhance emotional processing, and achieve meaningful therapeutic change. These simple, yet clinically elegant exercises, through the use of the youth's own internal metaphors, will cultivate increased self-awareness and encourage patients to experiment with different ways of thinking, feeling and being. Through symbolic representation, help your patients overcome blocks caused by cognitive defenses and language traps to keep them moving toward treatment goals of improved self-regulation, coping, and healing. 101 Arts-Based Activities to Get Children and Adolescents Talking is useful within moments after picking it up, due to the simple, organized way that each exercise is described, followed by a brief case example for use in both a younger and older child.
Estomih Mduma, Haydom Global Health Research Centre at Haydom Lutheran Hospital, Manyara, Tanzania
I support this book and activities as a way to help vulnerable children cope with trauma and regain lost hope.