Music Therapy Tools for Mental Healthcare

Delivered Friday, deployed immediately.

FIFTEEN brand new FLEA ukuleles ($3,300 retail value) bolster music therapy at Cincinnati Children’s College Hill campus. Superior quality, durability and vibrant colors make them ideal instruments for groups as well as individual therapy sessions.

Dale Rabiner, owner of DHR Guitar Experience in Oakley, generously sponsored this ukulele set and dedicated use.

Jenn Seley, MA, MT-BC, CCLS is holding a concert FLEA ukulele with Aloha Plum designer finish. Jenn transitioned from the hospital’s Main campus to College Hill site several years ago. Her role is fully dedicated to psychiatric patient care.

Why devote a large set of premium grade instruments to this specific campus?

• College Hill campus serves nearly 2,100 patients annually. A 3-story expansion began in 2015 with the new wing alone able to serve 10 in-patients (7-8 day average stay) plus 30 residential patients (120 day average stay) at a time. It made the hospital’s College Hill campus the largest pediatric psychiatric treatment center in the country.

• The campus doubled up on music therapy last summer with the addition of therapist Anthony Borzi, MA, MT-BC. Cincinnati Children’s now has seven full-time music therapists – plus interns – serving patients at Main, College Hill and StarShine hospice.

• Shortly after starting this role, Jenn told me that playing a colorful premium ukulele in this setting sends an extra esteem-building message to patients: I’m worth it.

Please consider making a contribution to our ongoing “Ukuleles for Hospital Music Therapy” campaign on GoFundMe. Steady growth beyond the base goal brings more holistic music therapy to those in critical care settings.

Gifted Music Therapists and Their New Instruments

Good things start with a warm cup of coffee.

In this case, meeting up with Brian Schreck, MA, MT-BC and Kathryn Bruno, MT-BC on Monday at Rookwood Commons Starbucks. Cold morning, icy streets. Kathryn walked over in between sessions at Eating Recovery Center Cincinnati. Brian braved a drive from Louisville, where he now serves adult patients at Norton Cancer Institute (NCI).

Brian Schreck, Kathryn Bruno - Rookwood Starbucks - 2018 01 08

We’ve met up routinely over the past decade. Usually to equip them with more FLEA ukuleles for music therapy at Cincinnati Children’s. And I always learn something new about the realm of music therapy (non-confidential info only!). Helps me help them.

FIFTEEN instruments were presented. Six were honorary donations to these gifted music therapists for personal and professional use. The remaining nine fulfill a special order funded by NCI’s new “Cancer Beats” program. Kathryn is posing with a Mango soprano FLEA ukulele. Brian is holding his new Rainsong graphite A/E guitar thanks to the generosity of Rainsong Graphite Guitars in Woodinville, Washington.

But beyond coffee, conversation and poses, the best is yet to come. Instruments of this caliber – in the hands of gifted music therapists – summon expression, hope and even joy despite a life threatening illness or condition.

The warmth of that coffee moment keeps pouring into the hearts of hundreds of patients, their family members, friends and caregivers.

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