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By Shimron Singh | May 25th, 2023

The Hong Kong Cancer Fund’s “Rainbow Club” recently held an “Art Therapy Experience Day” on April 23 to raise awareness about the power of art therapy for children with family members affected by cancer. According to the Hong Kong Cancer Registry, the city saw 34,179 new cancer cases in 2020, meaning over 30,000 families are affected by the disease. The “Rainbow Club” offers emotional support to children aged 5 to 17 who have a family member with cancer or who have lost someone to cancer. The club’s team of social workers, art therapists, and psychologists help children better understand the changes at home and improve their relationships with family members.

During the “Art Therapy Experience Day,” “Rainbow Club” members shared their experiences. One member, Tik Nga, who was diagnosed with lymphoma cancer in 2019, spoke about how the club’s art therapy sessions helped her son unleash his inner emotions and rebuild their relationship. Tik Nga’s son received a total of 28 individual sessions and 12 group sessions, alongside mother-son workshops, and saw great improvements in his emotions after learning to properly express his feelings.

To spread the power of art therapy, “Rainbow Club” art therapist Abbie guided participants to express their feelings and strengthen parent-child communication and relationship through art. The puppet-making class allowed children to express their feelings about physical discomfort and support each other when other family members feel unwell. The “Rainbow Club” recommends that parents seek external support promptly if their children are affected by family members struggling with cancer, to help them regain their positivity and confidence and face cancer together as a family.

Art therapy is a type of psychotherapy where participants use different art mediums to explore their inner selves, release negative emotions such as fear, sadness, and anxiety, and embark on a journey of self-discovery and renewal in a safe environment. The “Rainbow Club” is an initiative that helps children cope with the emotional challenges of having a family member with cancer. The event is an example of how art therapy can help children express themselves and improve their relationships with family members.