Karen Pence, the second lady of the United States has engaged herself in activities that will bring to limelight the profession of mental health relating to art therapy. Art therapists use the medium of art to give therapeutical treatment to those that are impaired medically, socially, developmentally, educationally and psychologically. Art therapy is of great benefit to people suffering from serious health conditions like traumatic brain injury, cancer and every other physical disabilities; people that have experienced traumatic events from natural disaster, combat and abuse and also individuals with disorders like dementia, autism, depression etc.
Mrs Pence, wife of Vice President Mike Pence, focuses on drawing people’s attention to art therapy, as well as, to the selfless services of members of the military service and their families. Karen Pence is many great things put together: a mother, award-winning watercolor artist and an educator.
Before 2013; Mrs Pence, the First Lady of Indiana was an elementary school teacher who have spent 25 years educating children. On becoming the First Lady of Indiana, she established 501 (c) 3—the Indiana First Lady’s Charitable Foundation with the goal to foster and encourage families and youths of Indiana. Within three years, charities all over Indiana received grants totaling $600,000.
Mrs Pence’s study of art therapy programs encompasses nations like Japan, Canada, South Korea, Germany, Australia, Belgium, the US and Indonesia. She is dedicated in enlightening the whole world about the profession of art therapy relating to mental health.
Mrs. Pence is a member of Riley Children’s Foundation and at IU Health in Indianapolis, she is the chairlady of the Art Therapy Initiative at Riley Hospital for Children.
Mrs. Pence’s support of art therapy programs in the whole of the United States and the world earned her the Award for Courage from Tracy’s Kids in February 2017. Also in the same month, she received recognition from Children’s National Health System and was given the Hero Award. Sister Cities International mission whose goal is to encourage individuals and communities to live in peace by understanding, respecting and cooperating with each other, awarded Mrs Pence with the Sister Cities International Diplomatic Leadership Award in March 2017 for her outstanding support. In addition to that, Sister Cities International made her their Honorary Vice Chairwoman in July 2017.
Mrs Pence launched Healing with the HeART, her art therapy initiative in October 2017. Her aim is to place the profession on a high pedestal to let people understand that art therapy is a profession of mental health and not merely art; to let people know that another alternative for treating various life experiences, conditions and illnesses is art therapy. Also, she aims to encourage youths to study this profession.