Saturday, July 7, 2007

Bereavement in Education, Creative Responses to Death and Bereavement, University of Western Ontario, London
Cheryl McLean

I recently agreed to teach the Creative Responses to Death and Bereavement course for Spring 2008 which is held as part of the Bereavement Certificate Program through the Centre for Continuing Studies and King's University College, University of Western Ontario. London.

The course was originally developed by the late Dr. John (Jack) Morgan, formerly Principal of King's University College, an international leader in Thanatology education, and is currently taught by Lois Mansfield. "Creative Responses to Death and Bereavement" helps participants explore the arts as therapeutic modalities as well as fostering greater awareness about the spiritual dimension of the arts. Professionals have an opportunity to learn about the interplay of the arts such as writing and narrative, drama, visual arts, dance and body movement as applied in death and bereavement work. Course registrants frequently include nurse educators and teachers, social workers, caregivers and others working in bereavement counselling and education.

“Unlike language, the arts have the potential to express diverse themes simultaneously. Through the arts, one can confront life and death on many levels at once. By engaging in an experience in the arts, people can be assisted as they mourn, grieve, celebrate life: they can overcome fragmentation, and find a sense of meaning in their lives."
Dr. John (Jack) Morgan

I will hope to report more about this course in creative arts and bereavement and the Thanatology Program at King's University College in future posts.

Suggested reading: Morgan, J.D. (1999), "Meeting the Needs of our Clients Creatively: The Impact of Art and Culture on Caregiving", Amityville, N.Y., Baywood.

King’s University College Centre for Education about Death and Bereavement

Continuing Studies, University of Western Ontario

Video: Brief clip /Creative Arts in Health, Bereavement C. McLean
"Living Stories of Hope and Change"