Last Wednesday at OCH, we chose just to paint. Simple. Brush to canvas.
The canvas boards were purchased at the Dollar Store and using craft acrylic paint, we sat down to let our minds and heart wander. It was pretty quiet, but during the session, one of the girls asked if we could make jewelry next week and another gentleman agreed he'd like to as well, so that's what we'll be doing next Wednesday. Their Bead Works program used to be operating but has since shut down, so we are left with a lot of supplies to work with.
When you're working with high risk youth, the most important thing you can do for them is simply to listen and acknowledge that they've been heard. Often they will take a long time to trust you or open up to you. The thing about art is that it's easy to feel safe when you're creating together. And it's even easier knowing that no words even need to be exchanged at all.