Written by Lana Ruvolo Grasser. Narrated by Marie T. Russell
A few years ago, framed by the skyline of Detroit, a group of about 15 children resettled as refugees from the Middle East and Africa leapt and twirled around, waving blue, pink and white streamers through the air.
The captivating scene was powerfully symbolic. Each streamer held a negative thought, feeling or memory that the children had written down on the streamers. On cue and in unison, the children released their streamers into the air, then sat down nearby. Then they gathered up the fallen streamers, which carried their collective struggles and hardships, threw them in a trash can and waved goodbye.
The children were participating in a dance therapy activity as part of our team’s research program exploring body-based approaches to mental health treatment in people resettled as refugees.
In 2017, our lab – the Stress, Trauma and Anxiety Research Clinic – began piloting movement therapies to help address trauma in refugee families. We are learning that movement may not only provide a way to express oneself, but also offer a path toward healing and lifelong strategies for managing stress...
Continue Reading at InnerSelf.com (plus audio/mp3 version of article)
Music By Caffeine Creek Band, Pixabay
Narrated by Marie T. Russell, InnerSelf.com
About The Author
Lana Ruvolo Grasser is a 5th year doctoral candidate (2021) at Wayne State University. She is a member of the Stress, Trauma, and Anxiety Research Clinic as well as the Jovanovic Lab, and she is co-mentored by Drs. Arash Javanbakht and Tanja Jovanovic. Her NIMH-funded dissertation project, “Biomarkers of Risk and Resilience to Trauma in Syrian Refugee Youth”, seeks to identify possible biological indicators of trauma-related psychopathology in youth exposed to civilian war trauma and forced migration. You can follow her professional works and personal adventures on Twitter, @ScientificRuvvy.