Providing the creative arts to the chronically mentally ill: A proposal for collaboration between Washington, D.C.'s mental health providers and the arts community
Symptoms of mental illness such as fear, anxiety, depression and/or decreased motivation, cause many mentally ill individuals to live isolated in their communities. Washington, D.C.'s community-based mental health providers can better meet the needs of their chronically mentally ill clients by collaborating with the city's arts community. Community-based mental health providers need recreational activities that can promote the integration of their clients into the community. This thesis explores the need for community activities for Washington, D.C,'s chronically mentally ill citizens and examines why community-based mental health providers should consider Washington's arts community to fill this need. Through research including interviews and observation, this thesis concludes that the creative arts can build self-esteem and socialization skills as well as decrease the chances of decompensation in the chronically mentally ill.