Promoting Healthy Development

Building Capacity to Effect Change in Communities

Encouraging Volunteerism

I am so proud of his behavioral and emotional progress and that he is moving onto middle school, and I will miss him a great deal. It has been an honor to work with him and witness his growth. He is a testament to the therapeutic process, in that he discovered what he needed to facilitate change and growth for himself, and he utilized me and our relationship to help him in that process. I am grateful to have gotten the opportunity to work with this great student.

Counselor, Gateway School-based Counseling

For confidentiality reasons, we will refer to this fifth-grade student as "Student A."  "Student A" struggles tremendously in school, both academically and emotionally.  He has been given the diagnosis of Emotionally Disturbed by the district and has a history of angry outbursts, having been a danger to himself and others.  I have been seeing him for almost a year now, and during that time he has grown in tremendous ways.

With the exception of one incident at the end of the school year triggered by the anxiety of his upcoming move to middle school, he has not had an uncontrollable nor dangerous outburst since last December. 

This great progress is mostly due to his pursuit in rapping.  He has used the therapeutic space and our relationship to explore his thoughts and feelings through the art form of rap.  We find a beat, he improvises, I record it, and then I burn him a CD to take home and share with his family.  He has grown very proud of his raps and has been able to tackle subjects through the music that he has great difficulty speaking directly about, such as family death, neighborhood violence, his love for his family, and his love for his school.  He even wrote and performed a rap for his class play, an activity he had not been able to be a part of in past years.