Several boxes arrived at WellSpring Resources last week and the agency’s Director of Counseling Services, Erin Bickle, says that they contain much more than packing peanuts.

“These boxes contain the promise of hope and recovery for area children,” Bickle said.

The boxes are filled with several toys and a dollhouse that will enhance the agency’s child therapy program.  Grant funds from the Junior Service Club of Edwardsville-Glen Carbon were used to purchase the toys. 

“In therapy children are encouraged to act out their emotions through play,” Bickle said. “Our clinicians interpret play and help children find strategies to cope with change, traumatic experiences and other problems.”

According to the Association for Play Therapy, through therapy “children learn to communicate with others, express feelings, modify behavior, develop problem-solving skills, and learn a variety of ways of relating to others. Play provides a safe psychological distance from their problems and allows expression of thoughts and feelings appropriate to their development.”

According to Signs for Life—Play Therapy for Deaf Children, play therapy works by building “new neural pathways in the brain by releasing anti-anxiety chemicals.” This process improves the child’s sense of well-being and helps them better cope with their emotions.  Play Therapy United Kingdom states that 74% - 83% of children show a positive change after play therapy. 

Bickle said that WellSpring Resources treated nearly 1,700 children last year and the generosity of the Junior Service Club of Edwardsville-Glen Carbon is sure to improve the experience of even more children this year. 

For more information about this grant project or about WellSpring Resources, contact Alexandra Cope, Development Coordinator, at (618) 462-2331 or at acope@wellspringresources.co.

The Junior Service Club of Edwardsville-Glen Carbon is a philanthropic, service and social club that strives to further interest among membership and the civic and economic welfare of the community.  

Founded in 1959, WellSpring Resources is a total mental wellness resource serving Madison, Greene, Jersey, and Calhoun counties.  With offices in Alton and Jerseyville WellSpring’s compassionate professionals work with children, adults and families to inspire hope and personal growth. Last year, over 6,000 people sought to change their lives for the better through WellSpring’s mental health and substance abuse services.  Visit www.wellspringresources.co for more information.

The services Mental Health Court Case Management, Senior Services, Outpatient, Adult Community Support and Child/Adolescent Community Support and provider WellSpring Resources is funded by the Madison County Mental Health Board.

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