Week # 3 – Blog Entry by Danny W. Pettry II, M.Ed., LPC, NCC, CTRS-BHS.
Do you think the kid (dressed as a hero) in the picture above can do it on her own?
She needs the help of many helpers, mentors, guides, teachers, and safe adults to make it.
It takes a village to raise a child.
The Hero (in stories) has a journey:
Victims are people in the story who face some type of challenge.
Victims follow a transformational path to become victors and heroes.
Examples of victims in popular stories:
- Katnis in the Hunger Games volunteers as tribute to save her sister from being selected. Her sister would have died in the Hunger Game fights. Katniss is a hero because she participates and wins the Hunger Games. She brings glory to her district.
- Luke in Star Wars joins the Jedi force to defeat Darth Vader (who killed his Aunt and Uncle) who he had been living with on a sand planet. Luke becomes a hero because he destroys the Death Star and saves the galaxy from the Evil Empire.
- Cinderella had wicked step-mother and two evil step sisters. They try to prevent Cinderella from having a chance with Prince Charming. She’s a hero because she wins her Prince Charming.
Victims can’t become a hero on their own.
Victims need help and support of someone who experienced and wiser.
Introduce: the Guide.
- Katniss has Haymitch who prepares her to win the Hunger Games. Haymitch had won the Hunger Games many years ago.
- Luke has Obi-wan who teaches him how to become a Jedi fighter and to destroy the Evil Darth Vader’s Death Star (planet destroyer) weapon. Obi-wan is an experienced Jedi warrior.
- Cinderella has a Fairy Godmother who helps her to prepare for the ball and win over Prince Charming.
Thank you Guides
Our victims wouldn’t have been able to make the transformation without you.
How does this apply to recreation therapy?
Victims are our patients and clients. They suffer from some type of physical or mental health challenge.
Victims want to become well again. They want to be restored to their highest functioning level possible.
The treatment is a path of recovery and transformation.
Recreation therapists are guides on their transformational process. Recreation therapists (along with the treatment team under supervision of physician) provide interventions to help a person to reach their highest functioning.
Recreation Therapists are TRansformational Guides. (and yes, that TR was put in there).
Recreation Therapists help people to maintain their abilities and reach fullest potential in these domains: social, physical, cognitive, emotional and overall independence.
Here are some examples;
- Social: Kid with Autism learns social skills through activities like social skills training and practice.
- Physical: Person with CP improves muscle tone and body improvement through activities like boxing.
- Cognitive: Person with Traumatic Brain Injury improves cognitive functioning through activities like trivia.
- Emotional: A person with social anxiety learns relaxation skills to help regulate anxiety.
The list of benefits and possibilities through recreation therapy are endless..
But the Transformational Guide stays the same: That is You, The Recreation Therapist.
Recreation therapists with the Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS) credential have had:
- educational training requiring at least a Bachelor’s degree in the field,
- on-the-job training internship under the supervision of a CTRS; and
- passed the national certification exam.
Thanks for everything you do. Recreation Therapists (Just Like You) are Amazing.