We recently spoke to our Music Therapist, Verity and we wanted to share what she had to say!
I am Verity, a Music Therapist based in Norfolk. I am a classically trained singer and think that the voice is a particularly powerful tool for self expression. I love to be creative in my work and will often use other mediums such as movement and art. As a music therapist I have been able to work with a wide array of clients, ranging from clients with dementia, children in foster care, children with Autism, adults with epilepsy and most recently working in a school for excluded teenagers from mainstream education with emotional and behavioural needs.
As a SMI therapist my work is presented in person or digitally, this process includes deep breathing and a guided meditation, it is a highly structured short term therapy and it is a relaxing and mindful approach to therapy for the client and benefits children and adults to manage daily anxieties.
I start my day undertaking tasks within my role as Donor Network Support. This entails corresponding with donors, managing engagement plans for recurring donations and sourcing stories from our music therapists to send to our donors, keeping them up to date with our work.
I am currently part of the launch of a new NHS programme aiding young people with emotional and behavioural difficulties. Over the past 6 months I have attended meetings and started to set up the beginnings of a new caseload of work, collaborating with different types of therapists such as dance therapists, play therapists and counsellors to obtain the best type of therapy for these young people.
As a music therapist I travel across Norfolk to schools and care homes, working in a person centred approach, where my sessions are tailored to the needs and musical preferences of my clients. I use a lot of voice work in these sessions as well as improvisation and incorporate mixed media such as music and drawing.
I am able to work with my SMI clients face to face or digitally, this is currently a lesser known therapeutic intervention and I am working to promote it across the UK and especially in Norfolk so that its benefits are more widely known.
At the end of my day I enjoy a time of reflection either taking a local countryside walk, outdoor swimming or visiting a local beach, really using the beautiful, natural resources that Norfolk has to offer. I also practice SMI weekly to manage any daily anxieties which I may face. I find this time of reflection very soothing and important to my self care regime.
I have always found Music to be a great way to convey emotion and have found it particularly effective when working through feelings. I love that I am able to use these methods therapeutically to help others as an alternative method to conventional talking therapies. I love being able to carry out my SMI work as I have experienced the benefits of the therapy during my training.
Sometimes Music therapy can be misunderstood for just music making or performing, and the scientific benefits to the specific techniques we use can sometimes be overlooked.
Whilst working as a Music therapist in a challenging setting with young people, my highlight was developing meaningful interactions with my clients and using a mixture of creative methods such as music and art to promote reminiscence and create conversations where we were able to safely explore emotionally vulnerable situations and past traumas.
I am passionate about self care and managing anxiety and I am so proud to have completed my qualifications in SMI as I was able to experience the process for myself whilst training, understanding the benefits for my clients. I am very excited to be able introduce my SMI qualifications into my work at Chiltern Music Therapy.
In my music therapy work with younger people I have found that the most requested song is ‘Take me Back to London’ - Ed Sheeran.
In my SMI sessions I have found that the most commonly chosen song is ‘Good Days’ - Instrumental by Day Shock Beats.
Empathetic, creative and person-centred.
I cover a wide range of areas in Norfolk - I am situated in Norwich but whilst working at Chiltern Music Therapy I have worked across North, West and South Norfolk, travelling up to an hour to attend sessions. My SMI sessions are particularly effective digitally so I can work with clients across the UK.
I am passionate about supporting self care and anxiety, and have been supporting people with emotional and behavioural difficulties through my music therapy work. I also work with clients with Dementia reinforcing the power of song to enable reminiscence and memory sharing.
As an SMI therapist I am able to support clients managing day to day anxieties, life transitions, experiencing depression and anxiety, interested in self-discovery and personal development, experiencing difficulties with relationships. The short term therapy can support emotional Difficulties, Anxiety, Depression, Low Self-Esteem, Grief, Personal Loss, Stress. It can also help people who are seeking Self-Development, Creativity and an Understanding of Self.
If you are interested in our music therapy work in Norfolk, please get in touch and we would be happy to have a chat with you.