Music Therapy Helps Children Facing Post-Hurricane Trauma in Puerto Rico

Months after Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, a lot of children reported PTSD. One of the ways psychologists and officials decided to help children on their path to recovery was to provide them with art education and workshops. Karen Caraballo, chief executive of Puerto Rico Rise Up and a psychologist, told NBC news about their organization’s efforts and the children’s path to recovery: 

“The kids have learned to identify their feelings, to handle conflict in a healthier way and to express themselves in a way that is nonthreatening through dance, music and painting,” Caraballo said.
Dr. Daniel Martínez Ortíz is one of the clinical psychologists who teaches the music therapy workshops with the help of college students from Carlos Albizu University in San Juan. Ortíz said Puerto Ricans of all ages are experiencing PTSD symptoms, such as high levels of anxiety and depression.
“We are still working with the communities that need help, and it’s never ending," he said. "There are a lot of schools that need help."

image credit: Marcela Valdivia / USC Annenberg via NBC news

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