The Art Therapy Outreach Center or the ATOC is a non-profit organization that focuses on providing free art therapy services in the NYC area to underprivileged groups that have experienced some form of trauma, including at-risk youth, war veterans, and survivors of sexual abuse and domestic violence. Our aim is to use the visual arts to deliver a therapeutic experience to participants that will lead to better physical, mental, and emotional well-being.
The ATOC aims to help all our clients and show them that they are not just victims but rather survivors of trauma. We aim to build their confidence and help them re-engage in their communities. Some students come to us to do their research in a related field. If you are a student who is struggling with their thesis, you can’t ask us, “Can you write my paper for me?” However, you can learn a lot from us that you can then use in your dissertation.
The ATOC programs include:
Living with HIV/AIDS affects your physical, psychological, and emotional well-being. People with HIV/AIDS struggle with prejudices and abandonment both by society at large and by the people closest to them.
The ATOC works with children and adolescents who struggle with family, peer, school, and societal pressures and their consequences.
Adolescents can be affected socially and emotionally by the medical/rehabilitative conditions (e.g. loss of a limb) that add to their regular day-to-day challenges.
When untreated, substance abuse can result in psychological and physiological issues and death.
Group therapy is available for torture survivors in their country of origin (due to their political or religious beliefs or sexual orientation).
Female and male survivors of sexual trauma can join group therapy and connect with each other to counteract their feeling of isolation.
Male and female veterans are welcome to join groups where they can confront their issues related to re-entering civilian life, post-traumatic stress, homelessness, substance abuse, and military sexual trauma.
Some individuals – including locals, area workers, rescuers, etc. – still feel the effects of the events of September 11, 2001.