Infant Jesus Homes and Children's Centers, Singapore
Aug 2013 - Apr 2014
Hindu Endowments Board - Ashram Halfway House, Singapore
Jan 2013 - Apr 2013
Institute of Mental Health, National Addictions Management Service, Singapore
A Child’s Search for a Secure Base: A Single Qualitative Case Study of Art Therapy in Singapore
Art therapy is a therapeutic modality that promotes visual and creative self-expression often on a symbolic level, through the strategic use of art media. As a result of this process, unconscious material often surfaces in the images, symbols and the artwork. In this dissertation the author explores her work with a seven year old boy who had been neglected by his primary caregivers and consequently placed in a care home in Singapore. Given that this young child had moved out of the country with his biological mother at a very young age, then repatriated to this country by his father and step-mother, followed by the placement in a care home, and finally leaving the care home to be re-untied with his father and step-mother, it is understandable and to be expected that he may exhibit impulsive behaviour. The hypothesis of this study, based on the author’s observations through the provision of individual art therapy to this child, is that he is symbolically searching for a secure base, as evidenced by the inclusion of spiritual imagery and imagery of the therapeutic relationship with the author. A single qualitative case study method is applied as the author consolidated the case material retrospectively. Individual art therapy seemed to be beneficial for this young child in particular, as it allowed him to appropriately express his anger and frustration in an age appropriate and visual manner.