The Hague-Embracing Horizons:
Thanks to the wonderful Karen Schneider who contacted me following a discussion we had at FIGT in 2018. We had connected immediately and talked at length about our interests and my work as an art psychotherapist in the international community. A few months later Karen got in contact and invited me to present at a forum at Embracing Horizons in The Hague, which I was really happy to accept.
Karen did a fantastic job of organizing the forum, keeping me updated, providing materials, meeting me at the airport and generally taking care of me during my short time in The Hague. I really enjoyed hearing about her experiences about moving to The Netherlands at the same time I had repatriated to the UK and it was good to compare notes on the transition process.
Those attending the forum were from a wide range of backgrounds, countries and nationalities and all of them had interesting experiences to share. I was able to connect with another art psychotherapist for the first time in the Netherlands and it was fantastic having Dr Sivan Weinstein to ask for follow up and ideas in relation to some of the points that we discussed as a group. Having another professional in the field added another dimension to my presentation which was a huge bonus.
After my presentation I provided 3 therapeutic art-based activities from which those at the workshop could choose to create during the rest of the forum session. There was a lot of discussion between group members and myself, and the activity part of the session provided the group with time to talk about our backgrounds, international experiences and ways of supporting TCK’s using a wide variety of approaches
There was a lot of sharing, laughter and interesting discussion. After being in Britain, it is always a relief and energy refuelling to return to my international tribe. Australians who had lived in Canada, Israelis based in the Netherlands, Americans who had worked in the UK-and more, those attending asked some great questions but also made me realise how much information I was trying to squeeze into a relatively small space of time.
The drop in tension from taking a couple of days out from the UK whilst it is in such a unprecedented political and social situation was evident and it was a relief to be in a room full of people talking where the topic of conversation wasn’t politically charged! I had a wonderful time with Karen, the group and in The Hague and look forward to providing training again there sometime in the near future. Thanks to everyone at Embracing Horizons and to those who attended for their support.