Creative collaboration for Aphasia and TBI therapy

Posted on May 22, 2012

This creative collaboration between the Departments of Communication Pathology and Music at the University of Pretoria was initiated in 2011. Tanya Brown, a final-year master’s student in Music Therapy, works together with the Conversation Group for people living with aphasia and cognitive-communication disorders. Together, they collaborated on a song-writing project, which resulted in the creation of a powerful and deeply meaningful song entitled “The Journey Song”.

Dr Glenn Goldblum, founder and co-ordinator of the Conversation Group, welcomed music therapy into her wonderful weekly Conversation Group sessions, offering support, guidance, many years of experience and much theoretical input to those involved. Music, within such a group context, not only offered the Conversation Group members a new way of expressing themselves and alternate means to communicate with others about the impact of aphasia and cognitive communication difficulties on their lives, but also provided them the opportunity to be creative through music.

Through a public showcasing of “The Journey Song” at the end of the 12-week collaboration, the Conversation Group was able to create awareness of the difficulties of living with a communication disorder and demonstrate the immense support that this Conversation Group offers each individual group member.

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