Published On: Tue, Oct 17th, 2017

National Institute of Arts and Art Save Lives foundation have joined forces to offer post hurricane Irma relief program


Philipsburg — ART HEALS was conceived by the need to create activities for children and adults geared to offering relief from stresses and trauma brought on by the passing of hurricane IRMA and its aftermath.

ART HEALS Hurricane Relief Arts Program is a program open to all and free of cost to the participants. Classes are daily from 3:30pm to 6:30 pm to children and teens of all ages. Classes are also offered on Saturday morning at NIA located at the John Larmonie Center in Philipsburg.

“What I know for sure” says Clara Reyes Co-Director of NIA, “is that the arts are integral to our human experience” she continues by saying, “Arts has always been the vehicle for expressing our inner most thoughts and feelings”.

“For many children, the hurricane made a deep impact and this is great way for children to give voice to their fear, insecurity, and helpless they may have felt when confronted by such a powerful storm like IRMA”

Today, many families have homes without roofs and in many case just hearing a strong breeze even weeks later, can awaken fear in a child because of the residue of the emotion running around in their bodies.

The arts have been very effective for many years as therapies of healing. NIA teacher are committed to creating a safe, nurturing, and fun environment where children can find release.

The collaboration of the ART HEALS program includes Tess Verheij of SXM Arts Café who will be providing art classes, Jacques Heemskerk providing Capoeira, St. Maarten Belly Dancer, along with TEAM NIA teachers proving drama, dance, gymnastics, storytelling and much more to children on a daily basis, including Saturday morning.

Please visit our NIA offices at the John Larmonie Center. The building at this time has no internet or phone services. It’s best to drop by after 3pm for more information. The program is open to all no cost. ART HEALS Hurricane Relief Arts Program. Email for more information.