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Music Art Program

The Program for Adaptive & Expressive Arts (PAEA) delivers therapeutic as well as recreational music, art and sensory exploration services, individual and group American Sign Language instruction, and Alternative Communications training and support to children and adults of Franklin, Grand Isle and Chittenden Counties of Vermont.

Our Vision: Enhancing Lives and Life Skills Through the Musical, Artistic, and Sensory Experiences, enhancing and increasing Communication skills and opportunities.

Research confirms that music, art and sensory experiences stimulate all areas of the brain simultaneously, including networks associated with motor control, memory, speech and emotions.

The woods would be very silent if no birds sang except those that sang best ~ Henry Van Dyke

Established in 1999 as the Adaptive Music Program, this consumer driven venture rapidly grew to serve more than half of the agency's clients with developmental needs, all of who choose music/art or sensory integration activities over other community activities such as bowling, restaurant outings and bingo. The program has since grown to incorporate the visual arts, sensory integration and communication activities. Case managers, teachers, nurses, and guardians give the program feedback that the clients have made significant gains in social skills, communication skills, and the ability to participate in other activities. More significantly, clients have new opportunities to express themselves and to experience a broader range of emotions in positive and appropriate ways. PAEA encourages personal growth and creative freedom by providing and environment of mutual respect.                                 

PAEA was awarded "Exemplary Status" by CARF.

Northwestern Counseling & Support Services is the only community behavioral health center in the state of Vermont to sponsor a therapeutic arts program for consumers with behavioral health and developmental disabilities.

Music is a higher revelation than all wisdom and philosphy. Music is the electrical soil in which the spirit lives, thinks and invents. ~ Ludwig van Beethoven

For more information, please contact Michelle Harms at (802) 782-8694 ext.5110 or (802) 393-5083 

ALGBITAL Ally; Safe Zone; Member of the Vermont Care Partners Network; rainbow triangle logo, green circle with pink triangle logo, CARF logo, Vermont Care Partners Network logo