Who Are We ?
Prajñādhara is a division of Snehadhara Foundation (SF). SF is a registered non-profit organisation based in Bangalore. It is the only organisation in the country that works with Arts Based Therapy (ABT) as the primary methodology to facilitate social, emotional and learning goals for children and adults with disabilities.
Prajñādhara is one of three SF initiatives crafted in pursuit of this goal. Prajñā means wisdom and translates into realizing or perceiving the true nature of reality; seeing things as they are, not as they appear. Prajñādhara’s twin aims are to create inclusive spaces that celebrate neurodiversity by certifying students in Arts Practices for Inclusion (API) and Study of the Mind.
Arts Practices for Inclusion (API)
API is a first-of-its-kind course which looks at therapeutic practices and social inclusion through the arts. Based on Prajñādhara’s experience in training over 60 ABT practitioners, a need was felt to design and implement a course that looks specifically at social inclusion through the Arts. API is a result of this vision and it facilitates the creation of inclusive spaces for children and adults with disabilities through student led projects.
Study Of the Mind
The Study of the Mind series of Prajñādhara looks at self-care and mindfulness practices based on Indian schools of wisdom and a secular framework of diverse practices of Buddhism, Sufism and Mysticism in popular religious philosophy. By making these powerful systems of mental and physical well-being available, Prajñādhara makes holistic complementary health and well-being practices accessible to all.
A one year certificate course in the therapeutic applications of arts to facilitate social inclusion.
Students train in therapeutic applications of visual arts, drama, stories, songs, rhythm, play and movement.
Students spearhead community projects for social inclusion.
Suitable for teachers,special educators, psychologists, speech, language and occupational therapists, arts therapists, social workers, persons working with or wanting to work with special needs and other vulnerable populations.
What happened to ABT Certificate Course Training?
We have been certifying practitioners in ABT for the past two years. The third batch will be certified in February 2020. Based on Gitanjali and Sumathi’s experience of teaching arts based therapy to over sixty practitioners, both felt the need to design and implement a course that looks specifically at social inclusion through the Arts. API is a result of their vision.
How is API different?
API is a first-of-its-kind course and reimagines ways of applying the arts. API looks at therapeutic outcomes within a creative framework- where practitioner, beneficiary and the art form meet to facilitate learning, social and emotional communication. The nuanced understanding that develops as a result of this framework is applied to create social inclusion projects where students facilitate dialogue, communication and intersubjectivity in relationships between mainstream and special needs populations.
What has changed?
API has a bespoke curriculum informed by our experience of working with special needs and other vulnerable populations. We offer practitioner support in a more significant way than any other therapeutic arts programmes in India.
(i) We provide up to 8 hours of on-site placement supervision through professional supervisors.
(ii) Supervisors will model session facilitation skills for students and give them feedback on their facilitation.
(iii) Our students will implement community based projects creating inclusive spaces across the country- an unparalleled initiative in the practice of arts to facilitate inclusion.
(iv) Students do not analyse the impact of their work through research. Students work directly with beneficiaries and focus on their needs.
How can we help with research?
(i) Prajnadhara sets up a back-end research wing which will monitor psycho-social impact of the student’s work.
(ii) Organisations can have access to research data to evaluate psycho-social impact and their own aims and aspirations for the beneficiaries.
(iii) Our supervisors will also support the organisations where our students will be working by directly facilitating sessions for beneficiaries and understanding organisational needs.
How can the course help you professionally?
The course imparts significant skill enhancement in Arts Practices for special educators, teachers, social entrepreneurs, speech and language, occupational and arts therapists, psychologists, sociologists, social anthropologists and others working with or wanting to work with special needs and other vulnerable populations. By looking at social inclusion in a foundational way, practitioners from all these fields stand to benefit by developing newer perspectives and insights into their professions. Moreover they experience and develop more nuanced ways of communicating with their clients and beneficiaries.
Can I take up the course with a full time job or other commitments?
In one word- Yes! You would need to take two weeks off in the academic year for a residential contact course in Bangalore. Another day for the certification ceremony. For the rest of the time you will be facilitating sessions for beneficiaries at your chosen organisation. You can be flexible in how you plan your schedules, as long as you complete the requisite number of sessions.
Would I have to relocate to Bangalore?
No. You would only be attending two residential contact sessions in Bangalore. You are free to attach yourself to an organisation in your home state to facilitate sessions with beneficiaries.
Do I need to have formal training or education in the creative arts?
Not all all. All we ask is that you keep a curious mind, interest or passion for the arts. Because you will be facilitating sessions with arts skills, the course provides you with self-experiences of the arts through practical lessons taught by the course educators. The course includes some enjoyable assessments through arts journals, videos, arts and craft which would keep you up to speed as well.