Creative writing to help soldiers deal with trauma

Soldiers suffering severe physical and psychological after-effects of war are to benefit from expressive writing workshops to help process and transcend their trauma.

The use of creative writing as therapy will be core to the Operation Homecoming programme to help heal service members at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE) at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland who have been affected by traumatic brain injuries and psychological health conditions. 

The year-long programme will be piloted from January, with an expressive writing workshop for troops as a part of their clinical rehabilitation, and a four-week creative writing and storytelling series for  service members and their families.

As someone who has used creative writing as a way of understanding upsets and difficulties in my life, and using it as a way of coming to terms with them, I wish the troops all the very best with their writing and healing.

National Endowment for the Arts chairman Rocco Landesman said: “There are strong indications that expressive writing and other forms of arts engagement can play an important role in improving the health and wellbeing of service men and women.”

 

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