On a Good Note

Posted by on Oct 26, 2016 in Featured Slider, News | 0 comments

Craig Glass, a therapist at Hathaway-Sycamores, is passionate about creating opportunities for youngsters to reach their full potential.  One of the ways he does that is with his other passion, music. Craig was inspired to start On a Good Note, an innovative songwriting therapy group co-facilitated with Nathalie Beltran. His belief in the healing power of this therapy is so strong that Craig personally provides all the music instruments and recording equipment for the group.

Hathaway-Sycamores' Nathalie Beltran and Craig Glass

Nathalie Beltran and Craig Glass

On a Good Note is designed to help 13 to 17 year olds who are struggling with self-esteem issues gain awareness of their personal strengths and appreciate themselves. According to Craig, “Each participant in the group creates their own song based on the topic of self-esteem. Youngsters with self-esteem issues are generally more depressed and withdrawn.” Craig goes on to explain, “The overarching idea of the group is they are artists.” The youth help write the lyrics, produce the music, and even practice mock interviews. In doing the interviews and promoting themselves, the kids identify their strengths. The music also provides a commonality, enabling the youngsters to bond.

The culmination of the 15 week group is a concert for the musicians’ families and their therapists. Craig recalls one mom in tears after hearing her daughter’s song about being bullied and teased. Even with the often painful emotions that are shared, the performances are an opportunity for the families to see the youngsters in another light. They see brave young people, with something to say, who are able to express themselves through writing and performing music. The concert is a deeply empowering experience for the youth. You can see the pride on their faces.

Craig makes sure that they keep the experience with them after the group is finished. Each of the young musicians is presented with a custom CD with their song, featuring cover art of their own creation and a plaque that certifies their song is gold. The message is simple, their song is worthy and more importantly, they are worthy.

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