Parents, caregivers, teachers and healthcare professionals gathered at Hope Academy on 8 January under the auspices of the Special Needs Foundation of Cayman for an hour-long presentation by the founder of Cayman Music Therapy, Julianne Parolisi, and fellow therapist, Kim Febres who outlined the far-reaching therapeutic benefits of music therapy.
This presentation is the first of the Special Needs Foundation mini-lecture series. Emma Donaldson, co-administrative director of SNFC, said, “These sessions are designed to discuss a range of therapies and expertise in the field of special needs. We were delighted to have Cayman Music Therapy discuss how music can help with special needs children.”
Established two-and-a-half years ago, Cayman Music Therapy provides services to a range of clients in public and private schools across the island, as well as working with Cayman HospiceCare to promote holistic end-of-life care plus offering a free annual summer camp programme to children with special needs. Tailored to address specific challenges, therapists work as part of a creative, interdisciplinary team to support the mental, physical and emotional health of individuals from all walks of life.
Recently credited in the high profile recovery of former American Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, left unable to walk and talk after being shot in the head by a deranged gunman in January 2011, music therapy appears to tap into areas of the brain that other treatments seem unable reach.
“Music possesses a universal power recognised in cultures throughout the world,” Ms Parolisi said. “It is a great motivator. Not only can it be used to enhance communication, memory and physical rehabilitation, but also to help express feelings, alleviate pain and stress and promote a sense of peace and wellbeing.”
For more information about Music Therapy, contact Julianne Parolisi at [email protected]