Tag Archives: Ghana

Skin Care Classes at the Care Center

We love hearing stories of how a trip to our Care Center in Ghana made an impact on our volunteers. Today Patty Wolverton, from Genesis Church in Phoenix, is sharing her story of her trip to Ghana during our health fair in August. My family includes three children – two boys a girl, and we are blessed with three precious grandkids. Since we all live in different states, traveling occupies most of our free time so that we can invest in our family. My husband’s job relocated us to the Phoenix area about ten years ago, which is where we currently reside, although originally, I am from the Seattle area. Touch A Life was on our radar back in 2007 when our pastor, Pat Stark from Genesis church, traveled to Ghana. It touched my husband and me deeply, learning about the trafficked kids that were fishing, especially since my husband has worked in the seafood industry for years. After hearing about hearing about Touch A Life, we took the first step and started sponsoring a young man at the Care Center named Raul. This past August, I was able to travel to Ghana myself. Going to the Touch A Life […]

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New Well for the Care Center

Water is everything. Access to a nearby well means less time transporting water and more time spent learning and creating. Access to clean, filtered water lowers the risk of parasites and disease. With the help of the Sanches family (and their Walk for Water!) and the Brad Forslund family, Touch A Life was able to update the purification system on the well that supplies water to the majority of our Care Center, and build a second brand new well. The new well is strategically positioned on the edge of the Care Center property in Kumasi, Ghana, so that the neighbors in our community can also have access to clean water.      

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Using Collage in Art Therapy

This post is part of our blog series by our Art Therapist, Ally Root. Ally is passionate about the ways in which the creative arts can bring healing, and she will be sharing her thoughts here along with projects that she has completed with the children at our Care Center in Ghana. You can read Ally’s previous posts on art therapy in our blog archives. Collage is an excellent medium to use in an art therapy setting. For individuals who may not feel completely confident in their drawing abilities, collage is a great way for them to express themselves creatively without the pressure of making a realistic drawing. Additionally, the act of cutting and ripping images and gluing them together can be cathartic for some. Collage gives artists the opportunity to pull pieces from their surrounding environments and form their own collection of images and words that have personal meaning to them. From these pieces, they can create their own unique entity that reflects their inner world. Using old newspapers to compile images into collages is a favorite activity with the children at the Touch A Life Care Center. Upon request, the oldest boys at the care center participated in a free collage-making […]

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Exploring Safety Issues in Art Therapy

This post is part of our blog series on art therapy by our Art Center Director, Ally Root. Ally is passionate about the ways in which the creative arts can bring healing, and she will be sharing her thoughts here along with projects that she has completed with the children at our Care Center in Ghana. You can read her previous posts here, here and here. The children at the Touch A Life Care Center have come from varied backgrounds of slavery and exploitation, but one thing they have in common is a past that was not always safe. Feeling safe in one’s surroundings is important for all human beings, specifically children. Safety can mean many things, and pertain to: Physical safety: being away in proximity from immediate danger Emotional/Psychological safety: free from emotional/psychological harm and abuse, the ability to develop relationships based on trust rather than fear, feelings of security in one’s surroundings Emotional and physical safety can be compromised if a child has been in a dangerous or threatening situation. When a person enters art therapy, their safety situation should be assessed in order to help them surpass any obstacles they face toward living a physically and emotionally safe life. The art therapy […]

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Exploring Different Materials in Art Therapy

This post is part of our blog series on art therapy by our Art Center Director, Ally Root. Ally is passionate about the ways in which the creative arts can bring healing, and she will be sharing her thoughts here along with projects that she has completed with the children at our Care Center in Ghana. You can read her previous posts here, here and here.   One of the great benefits of using art in therapy is that the creative process allows for a variety of sensory experiences. Sight, smell, touch, and sound are all elements associated with art-making. The materials that one chooses to use for their artistic creation has great meaning. The way a person interacts with the art materials they use can bring up emotional states triggered by the sensory experience. For example, the act of molding clay can be overwhelming for some who may not be comfortable with moist or fluid-like materials. This person may prefer to use a more structured material such as colored pencil. For another person, colored pencil may seem restricting in comparison to clay, as clay is easily molded and colored pencil tends to be somewhat rigid. Art materials can be fun to explore as you […]

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Found Object Sculptures for Art Therapy

This post is part of our blog series on art therapy by our Art Center Director, Ally Root. Ally is passionate about the ways in which the creative arts can bring healing, and she will be sharing her thoughts here along with projects that she has completed with the children at our Care Center in Ghana. You can read her previous posts here and here. “Found object originates from the French objet trouvé, describing art created from undisguised, but often modified, objects or products that are not normally considered art, often because they already have a non-art function.” (Museum of Modern Art Collection, www.moma.org). Using everyday items, or “found objects,” in art can be a very meaningful experience. Found objects can include anything from old household items to discarded trash. By using found objects as an artistic way, the artist has the opportunity to take something seemingly mundane and turn it into a unique aesthetic entity. Found object creations are very valuable in art therapy because they allow the participant to attach their own unique meaning to items that may commonly hold a completely different significance to others. Making “found object art” can also metaphorically describe a transformation process by turning […]

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A Space for Art Therapy

This post is part of our blog series on art therapy by our Art Center Director, Ally Root. Ally is passionate about the ways in which the creative arts can bring healing, and she will be sharing her thoughts here along with projects that she has completed with the children at our Care Center in Ghana. One of the most important components to a successful art therapy approach is having a comfortable environment in which the therapy can take place. It is vital for both parties (the client and the therapist) to create a space that feels safe, nurturing, and conducive to building an open and trusting relationship. This notion was conceptualized by English pediatrition and psychoanalyst, D.W. Winnicott, who referred the therapeutic space as a “holding environment”. Winnicott’s theory asserts: “Term “holding” refers to the supportive environment that a therapist creates for a client. The concept can be likened to the nurturing and caring behavior a mother engages in with her child that results in a sense of trust and safety. Winnicott believed that this “holding environment” was critical to the therapeutic environment and could be created through the therapist’s direct engagement with a client. Winnicott also believed that antisocial […]

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A Return to Ghana

This week we have a guest post from Lauren Burton. Lauren is the leader of the Find Your Mark chapter in Nashville, TN, and she and her husband lead an annual team to our Care Center to provide dental assessments for each child. Her journey with Touch A Life began as an observer at a fundraising event, and now three years later, she is an adoptive parent and a key supporter in our work happening in Ghana. This month she will travel to Ghana with her family and adopted son, Micah, and will be sharing her family’s experiences throughout the summer. Sometimes life can feel monotonous. Like it is nothing more than a never-ending cycle of to-do lists and errands that threaten to define us. Sometimes though, maybe even every single day, God sends us opportunities that are meant to free us from this trivial haze. One of my chances came in a phone call from a friend inviting me to come with her and a medical team from Nashville, Tennessee, to work with the Touch A Life Foundation in Ghana. As a mom to three young children, it was the last thing I had time for, but it was […]

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When Isaac Grows Up

Meet Isaac! Isaac is constantly smiling – he has a bright, sunny disposition and his joy is contagious. Isaac loves being around people and having conversations about life. He also loves getting his picture taken and he is fascinated with cameras. Isaac likes to read and write, and enjoys reading out loud with his friends.  Isaac wants to attend college and study law! With his charming personality, determination, and thirst for knowledge, he is right on track to meet his goals. If you’d like more information on how you can contribute to the higher education of a child in our care, read about our educational sponsorship or contact us!    

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Celebrate Independence

March 6th is recognized as Ghana’s Independence Day. In 1957, the Ghanaian people celebrated the end of colonial rule in their country, as they were the first nation in sub-saharan Africa to do so. On their very first Independence Day, Queen Elizabeth of England sent a message to be read to the people of Ghana. In it she said, “The hopes of many, especially in Africa, hang on your endeavours. It is my earnest and confident belief that my people in Ghana will go forward in freedom and justice.” This year, we are holding onto that hope and celebrating on March 6th – but for a slightly different reason. Come alongside us as we celebrate the Touch A Life children’s independence and freedom. Join us in rejoicing over the fact that these children are truly independent, free from slavery, and celebrate that they have been rescued and given a loving place to receive rehabilitation. It is your involvement that ensures a bright future for each child in our care. Our Global Family continues to support Touch A Life as we expand and grow, from the help we received to build the Touch A Life Care Center in Kumasi, Ghana, to the […]

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