This beautifully illustrated and sensitive storybook is designed to be used therapeutically by professionals and caregivers supporting children with a parent who is suffering from depression. With engaging, gentle and colourful illustrations that can be used to prompt conversation, it tells the story of a girl who is helped to feel less isolated from her parents’ depression.
This book is also available to buy as part of the Therapeutic Fairy Tales set. Therapeutic Fairy Tales is a series of short modern tales dedicated to exploring challenging life situations that might be faced by young children. Each short story is designed to be used by professionals and caregivers as they use stories therapeutically to support children’s mental and emotional health.
Other books in the series include:
- Storybook Manual: An Introduction To Working With Storybooks Therapeutically And Creatively
- The Night Crossing: A Lullaby For Children On Life's Last Journey
- The Storm: For Children Growing Through Parent’s Separation
Designed to be used with children aged 7+, each story has an accompanying online resource, offering therapeutic prompts and creative exercises to support the practitioner. These resources can also be adapted for wider use with siblings and other family members.
The Island – part of the Therapeutic Fairy Tales series – is born out of a creative collaboration between Pia Jones and Sarah Pimenta.
Table of Contents
A Word of Caution The Island: For children with a parent living with depression
Pia Jones is an author, workshop facilitator and UKCP integrative arts psychotherapist, who trained at The Institute for Arts in Therapy & Education. Pia has worked with children and adults in a variety of school, health and community settings, including Place 2 Be and Kids Company. Core to her practice, is using art and story as support during times of loss, transition and change, giving a TEDx talk on the subject. She was Story Director on artgym’s award-winning film documentary, ‘The Moving Theatre,’ where puppetry brought stories of migration to life. Pia also designed the ‘Sometimes I Feel’ story cards, a Speechmark therapeutic resource to support children with their feelings. You can view her work at www.silverowlartstherapy.org.uk.
Sarah Pimenta is an experienced artist, workshop facilitator and lecturer in creativity. Her specialist art form is print-making, and her creative practice has brought texture, colour and emotion into a variety of environments, both in the UK and abroad. Sarah has over twenty years’ experience of designing and delivering creative, high-quality art workshops in over 250 schools, diverse communities and public venues, including the British Library, V&A, NESTA, Oval House and many charities. Her work is often described as art with therapeutic intent, and she is skilled in working with adults and children who have access issues and complex needs. Sarah is known as Social Fabric www.social-fabric.co.uk.
Both Pia and Sarah hope these Therapeutic Fairy Tales open up conversations that enable children and families’ own stories and feelings to be seen and heard.
A gentle story of the importance of seeking help when family members and others around the child may be struggling. The Island supports children who may feel alone, encouraging them to reach out for kindness and support.
Hephzibah Kaplan, Art Therapist, Director of London Art Therapy Centre
This sensitively written and delightfully illustrated book will reassure young children who are isolated by living with a parent with a mental health problem, that it is not their fault and it is not their job to fix a parent’s illness. It opens up a dialogue for a child to acknowledge a range of emotions that they may be experiencing.
Janey Treharne from Jigsaw (South East)
The Island sensitively depicts the isolation and loneliness a child may feel living with a parent with depression. The story allows for discussion with the child to explore their caring role and the self-blame felt by children who have a lived experience of parental mental health. The story gives a powerful message, encouraging a child to share their experiences and opening up conversations about this difficult subject.
Sarah-Jane Farr (Family Support Keyworker, Early Help WSCC)
The power of these stories lies in their deeper natural and archetypal metaphor, something like the deeper Mother Earth continuity below any surface. Before even reading any of these Therapeutic Fairy-Tales, you feel their tenderness through the stunningly beautiful illustrations.
Molly Wolfe, Art Psychotherapist, Sandplay Specialist