A new collaboration between the Angel Band Project, a St. Louis-based nonprofit, and the Nordoff-Robbins Center for Music Therapy at NYU Steinhardt will provide free music therapy to survivors of sexual violence in the New York City area.
Funded by a grant from the Angel Band Project to NYU Steinhardt, small groups of women, referred through local agencies, will participate in a series of 90-minute music therapy sessions. The groups will meet weekly for six weeks to experience the therapeutic effects of music as a way to help in their healing process.
Three six-week programs at the Nordoff-Robbins Center for Music Therapy are planned for 2017 in the spring, summer, and fall, with the first session starting in April. Benedikte Scheiby, an adjunct instructor in the Music Therapy program at NYU Steinhardt and an expert in analytical music therapy, will lead the group music therapy sessions.
“Music therapy has emerged as a transformative tool for helping people process and cope with trauma. We are grateful to be working with the Angel Band Project to bring music therapy to survivors of sexual violence,” said Kenneth Aigen, associate professor of music therapy at NYU Steinhardt.
In the aftermath of trauma, music therapy can be successfully used to provide structure and release. It can also address several goals, including improving self image and validation, social interaction and adjustment, and addressing issues of trust.
As part of its work supporting survivors of sexual and domestic violence, the Angel Band Project organizes and funds music therapy programs. The nonprofit has provided music therapy in St. Louis and Seattle, and through this new collaboration with NYU Steinhardt, will bring its work to New York City.
“We all know the joy and hope music can provide as we work towards a world less exposed to violence. But it can also be an important tool in the healing journey for victims of sexual assault,” said Rachel Ebeling, executive director of the Angel Band Project.