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Music as a Global Resource: - International Council for Caring ...

Music as a Global Resource: - International Council for Caring ...

CONTACT INFORMATION:

CONTACT INFORMATION: Maria Gonsalves Schimpf, Music Therapist 722 E. Baseline Rd. Lafayette, CO 80026 Phone: (646) 263-1495 Email: mcg257@nyu.edu 136

SECTION: Music for Working with Trauma Survivors COUNTRY: Chile PROJECT: USING MUSIC TO AID PEOPLE AFFECTED BY THE CHILEAN EARTHQUAKE OF FEBRUARY 27, 2010: THE CUREPTO PROJECT DESCRIPTION: The Curepto Project is a music therapy initiative that came about after an earthquake on February 27, 2010 that registered an 8.8 magnitude on the Richter scale, followed by a tsunami which devastated a large area of southern Chile. The town of Curepto is located 400 km southeast of Santiago with 4,000 inhabitants, mainly and agriculture low income community with a strong tradition of adobe architecture. About 80% of the homes were completely destroyed and four people were killed. Many of the residents were traumatized by the event and their way of life has changed dramatically. Their homes have been replaced by small wooden houses with no utilities. Emotional support has not reached the community at large causing a consequent increase in depression and alcoholism. The objectives of this music therapy project include providing: emotional support and crisis survival techniques for front line workers (health professionals, teachers, community leaders, fire fighters) emotional support and crisis survival techniques for the Curepto´s Seniors Home assistants and the residents emotional support for groups, including children and youth community initiatives for sustainable music activities workshops for teachers to implement creative techniques of communication and teaching for students Facing a crisis situation of this magnitude creates acute stress and without proper intervention could lead to Posttraumatic Stress Syndrome. It is important for earthquake victims to acknowledge and to identify emotional reactions to the crisis and to develop mechanisms for self-care in order to be able to help their families and others in their community. This project provides group music therapy using creative musicmaking techniques to open channels of communication for self-exploration in order to clarify ideas and to come in contact with emotions. The project provides about 50 musical instruments, easy to use and providing a diversity of sounds, including typical instruments of the area. The activities have included free improvisation with the instruments, singing popular songs and composing over familiar melodies and movement (breathing and relaxation techniques). As many of the buildings are badly damaged or unsafe to use, there is need for flexibility as to where the sessions take place. Music therapy sessions have been carried out in public school classrooms, community centers for senior citizens, the meeting area of the town municipal building, the lobby of the first aid walk in rural clinic, the hospital of Curepto, the community center of the popular housing area, the fire station and a day care center. Group interventions have been offered according to the needs of the clients. There has been continuous communication with local professionals (health, education, social work) who help identify the groups to be served. CURRENT STATUS: Three sessions were offered to most groups over a period of several months. The Curepto Project takes place in three phases based on the belief that by offering a creative outlet through music clients will be able to: 137

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