speakers

Speakers

Amal Halyan

Amal Halyan

Amal Halyan

Dr Amal Al Halyan has been a senior health professional in Health and Safety at ADNOC Onshore since 2015. She has a rich 19 years of experience in psychiatry, conducting national surveys and research analysis. She is a mental health advocate and passionate mental well-being campaigner. She initiated the first child mental health services in Dubai, in Rashid Hospital, which contributed to changing the perception of child mental health and wellbeing. She had conducted several talks to parents, teachers, and children in schools and other setups, as well as on national television and radio.Dr. Amal has a passion for art and an interest in art therapy. She steered a multidisciplinary team to psychologically analyze children's drawings, an initiative done by the Ministry of Happiness. She completed the Foundation in Art Therapy at ATIC (approved by BAAT) and is starting the Art Therapy Diploma (Level 6) this fall.

Amar Behbehani

Amar Behbehani

Amar Behbehani

She is the founder of SHORE CONSULTANCY, home of wellbeing and human innovation that offers psychological, educational, and psycho-organizational consultancies for the betterment of humanity through the creative process. Dr. Amar is also the first certified Art Psychotherapist in Kuwait since 2009. She considers herself a life scientist who has a passion for improving the quality of life through education, innovation, creativity, and compassion. She is an Assistant Professor of Innovation & Design Sciences in the College of Architecture, Kuwait University. Her academic career focuses on visual psychology and behavioral design. As a certified organizational therapist, she has been working closely with the industrial and corporate environments to develop human-centered training in creative leadership, creative problem solving, and communication skills. She is a co-founder and past president of Soroptimist Kuwait, a branch of an international society for women empowerment and eliminating violence against women. She is the founder of the first rehabilitation program for women survivors of violence and has been using the creative path as a tool to help them heal their trauma, PTSD, and depression.

PhD in Clinical Art Therapy, Florida State University, USA

PhD in Arts Education, Florida State University, USA

MSc in Clinical Therapy: LMHP & Family Therapy Certification, FSU, USA

MFA in Design for Wellbeing, Rochester Institute of Technology, NY, USA

BArts in Visual Communication, American University in Cairo, Egypt

Avi Goren-Bar

Avi Goren-Bar

Avi Goren-Bar

Avi Goren-Bar is a distinguished psychologist, educator, and expert in the field of expressive therapies and coaching, with a rich academic and professional background spanning several decades.

Avi is founder of Jungian Coaching method and Jungian Coaching School International with domestic schools in 6 Countries: Romania, Turkey, South Africa, Israel, Greece, and Hungary. Throughout a dynamic career in higher education, Avi held significant academic positions at various institutes. Avi's dedication to teaching and research was evident during roles as a Lecturer at Tel Aviv University (1984-1985), Kibbutzim College (1985-1988), Lesley College Extension (1986-2001), T.L.M. Kibbutzim College (1995-1997), Haifa University (1995-1999), The College of Management Academic Studies (2001-2015), and Beit-Berl Academic College (2014-2020), where they served as a Senior Lecturer in the M.A. Art Therapy Program.

Avi is the author of several publications and books "An introduction of Jungian Coaching (2021)," "The secrets of Expressive art therapy and coaching (2018)," Clinical Expressive art therapy in theory and practice (2019)".

Asma Mouldi Ismail

Asma Mouldi Ismail

Asma Mouldi Ismail

Clinical forensic psychologist and member of Egyptian Art Therapy Association. As mastering and inspired by the psychodynamic school , she used the Art therapy as a valuable tool allowing individuals to express their thoughts, emotions, and unconscious material in a non-verbal way. She has an experience with victims of abuse, substance use disorder and victims of trauma like natural crisis, people in closed institutions ( jails).

Through the creation of art, she was supporting individuals tap into their unconscious mind, revealing hidden feelings, conflicts, and memories. In a psychodynamic context, the process of creating art can serve as a form of free association, like how traditional talk therapy encourages patients to speak freely without censorship. Analyzing the artwork produced in art therapy sessions can provide insights into a person's unconscious mind, helping to uncover unresolved issues, symbolic representations, and underlying conflicts. The use of art in therapy aligns with key psychodynamic principles, such as exploring the unconscious, understanding the impact of past experiences, and promoting self-awareness and insight. She is advocating the implementation of Art therapy licensing process in the Arabic world and UAE from her position as expert matter in the government.

Awad MS Alyami

Awad MS Alyami

Awad MS Alyami

PhD

Awad MS Alyami, PhD, is a highly respected and influential Art Therapist who has made significant contributions to the field. He obtained his Master's degree from Herron School of Arts in 1985, and then completed his Ph.D. from Penn State University in 1995.

Alyami has successfully treated a wide range of patients, and his pioneering work in art therapy has earned him much recognition. In 1998, he founded the 1st Art Therapy Clinic in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, a private practice specializing in art therapy. He is also known for founding the first official art therapy unit in a government hospital in Saudi Arabia in 2005. In 2007, he founded the first Art Therapy program in counterterrorism, an innovative approach to treating the ideology of terrorism among ex-terrorists.

After retiring as a professor at King Saud University, Dr. Alyami, continues working with children with medical conditions. His Solution-focused Brief Art Therapy Approach has significantly enhanced the lives of his psychiatric patients. He has also published numerous peer-reviewed articles in Art therapy journals and even authored the first Arabic Art Therapy Textbook.

Alyami's contributions as a mental health professional have been exceptional, and he is internationally recognized for his work as an innovative art therapist.

Carol Hammal

Carol Hammal

Carol Hammal

Carol Hammal, MA, is an Egyptian art psychotherapist based out of Cairo, Egypt. She is considered instrumental in developing the art therapy field in Egypt. She received her Master’s Degree in Art Therapy & Counseling from Drexel University in Philadelphia. Her thesis topic was about introducing the iPad as an art medium in art therapy. Hammal is a Digital Art Therapy consultant and often guest lectures about digital art therapy tools and their potential integration within clinical & medical settings. She specializes in Medical Art Therapy & Health Psychology.

In Philadelphia, she joined the American Red Cross and introduced art therapy to disaster victims at the Red Cross House as part of her work with Philadelphia’s Disaster Action Team.

In Egypt, she continues to help develop the art therapy field in Cairo and hopes to introduce Egypt’s first art therapy graduate degree to help train other Egyptians to pursue their art therapy career. She practiced art therapy at the Behman Hospital in Egypt within its inpatient addiction unit for over 12 years. She currently continues to offer art therapy sessions in outpatient and online settings.

In addition to her clinical work, Carol consults in multiple establishments to help promote the use of art therapy in different settings as well as often guest-lecturing at The American University in Cairo. She now directs O7 Academy which is the first online mental health institute for continuing education in the Arab region.

Hammal is a member at the American Art Therapy Association (AATA). She presented a TEDx talk about art therapy’s development in Egypt in 2014.

In 2018, Mrs. Karen Pence, Second Lady of the United States, paid her an official state visit in Egypt to recognize her work through her global art therapy campaign “Healing through the HeART”.

She was recognized in 2019 by Drexel University as one of their top “40 Under 40” Alumni for her groundbreaking work within her field.

Chris Storm

Chris Storm

Chris Storm

AThR, SEP, BA, M.Ed., CCPT, MACA, PACFA Reg Clinical, IEATA

Chris a Sensorimotor Art Therapist in private practice and a Senior Faculty member of the Institute for Sensorimotor Art Therapy (ISAT). She currently facilitates the ISAT online 2-year Certificate of Initiatic Art Therapy course. She has specifically utilised a Sensorimotor Art Therapy approach in her work over the past 15 years. Utilising Sensorimotor Arts Therapies and body based somatic approaches in conjunction with her specialist qualifications in Family Violence prevention, Chris continues to work with individuals (adults and children) to support behaviour change and healing.Chris has over 40 years of experience in working in the community services sector in addition to the development of her private practice of 15 years. Chris’s knowledge and history of working in the field of family violence intervention and prevention includes being an executive Board Member of No To Violence (NTV), the national male family violence prevention program in Australia for ten years.

Clare Jerdan

Clare Jerdan

Clare Jerdan

M.A. Gestalt, B.Soc.Sci, AThR, Dip. Sensorimotor Art Therapy, EMDR. Clinical member of PACFA, ANZACATA, GANZ, IEATA

Clare is a faculty member of the Institute of Sensorimotor Art therapy in Australia. She is an international trainer and supervisor in Sensorimotor Art Therapy. She was a Clinical Health Care Professional before she transitioned to Psychology, Gestalt Psychotherapy and Sensorimotor Art Therapy. Clare has extensive experience ranging from Palliative Care, Mental Health, Alcohol and other Drug Dependency and Complex Trauma. Clare has a private practice in Byron Bay where she works with both adults and children. She is a trainer and supervisor at the Institute of Sensorimotor Art Therapy, and also contracts to a private mental health treatment center in Byron Bay, Australia.

Emma Mills

Emma Mills

Emma Mills

Emma is an Art Psychotherapist with over 35 years of experience in various community roles, including teaching, therapy, and community project management. She has practiced as an Art Therapist for 18 years. Emma currently manages a community arts-based mental health project for a local UK authority while also maintaining a private practice. Additionally, Emma authors and delivers modules on "Working with Children in the Context of Domestic Violence and Sexual Abuse" at the University of London, Goldsmiths College, as part of their Domestic Violence MA program.

Emma holds an M.A. in Art Psychotherapy from Goldsmiths College and a Postgraduate Certificate in Secondary Education from Greenwich University. She is actively involved in professional organizations, being a member of the British Association of Art Therapists, the UK Health’s Professional Council, and she co-founded Circle International Art and Drama Therapy (CIADT).

For 16 years, Emma created and facilitated an art therapy service for children at an Essex Women’s Aid Refuge, working with children and mothers who had experienced domestic abuse. With CIADT, Emma has trained over 2000 professionals working with orphans and vulnerable children in Botswana since 2008.

Lamees Abuhlaiqa

Lamees Abuhlaiqa

Lamees Abuhlaiqa

A Medical Doctor by background with more than 20 years' experience in the Medical field, Dr. Lamees graduated from the Royal college of Surgeons in Ireland RCSI ( May 2002), holds Executive master's in health administration at ZU 2012 and Certified Diploma in Executive Coaching from AOEC 2020. ACC ICF accredited coach 2021. Certified Professional International Trainer 2020 holds degree as Certified Therapeutic Life 2021 from Transformation Academy. She is also a certified relationship coach, NLP coach and ORSC certified partitioner .She believes that people can connect their values, goals heal through art and that was the base of her unique art workshop. Dr. Lamees has created and given an art therapy team coaching workshop sessions in past two years in Abu Dhabi in cooperation with Reflct Art Center. She was a guest at several T.V channel including Emirates T.V and Sama Dubai to talk about her artwork.

She also participated in several local and international art exhibitions in UAE one of which was World Art Dubai. She is currently leading the conferences and training section /Abu Dhabi Public Health Center. Contributed as a speaker and moderator in several international conferences including Women Health Conference, Future Health Summit 2021, 2022 and was part of the Committee board for ISPAH Congress in 2022. Emirati Award winner in 2022 for social work contribution

Lynn Kapitan

Lynn Kapitan

Lynn Kapitan

Lynn Kapitan, PhD, ATR-BC, HLM is a Professor Emerit and Founding Director of the Professional Doctorate in Art Therapy at Mount Mary University, Milwaukee, WI (USA). Past President of the American Art Therapy Association, she has contributed to research advancement in the field as a former executive journal editor of Art Therapy, author of Introduction to Art Therapy Research and co-editor of International Advances in Art Therapy Research and Practice. She served on a cross-cultural research team in Latin America for over two decades, which has shaped her understanding of the intersections between research, practice, culture, and community empowerment.

Dr Maha Rashed

Dr Maha Rashed

Dr Maha Rashed

As the first Saudi woman to pursue a PhD in Art Therapy in the United States, she brings over twelve years of dedicated experience to the world of therapeutic art. Her passion lies in the realm of Family Marriage Art Therapy, specializing in working with women, children, and families.

Throughout my career, Dr Maha has harnessed the power of art therapy, always guided by the belief that her rich Saudi tradition and Middle Eastern culture have a profound influence on the field of art therapy. This conviction has fueled her commitment to conducting research that intimately involves this population.

Her journey is marked not only by academic achievements but also by a deep understanding of the cultural and societal nuances that shape the practice of art therapy in the Middle East. Through her work, she aims to bridge the gap between these traditions and modern therapeutic techniques, ultimately improving the well-being of individuals and families in Saudi Arabia and beyond.

Maissa Al Khafajy

Maissa Al Khafajy

Maissa Al Khafajy

Maissa Al Khafajy is the Emirati founder of Therapie, a community led platform and physical space, that introduces members to the concept of healing through different modalities, including Art Therapy. She is a strong believer in healing through alternative modalities to nurture, balance and optimise the mind, body and spirit and has helped organize Art Therapy group workshops in Abu Dhabi with licensed Art therapists, meditation circles, sound healing and group reiki sessions as well as community talks with certified life coaches in the hope of breaking the taboo of seeking help.

She is a Member of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, a certified Theta healer practitioner, a certified NLP Practitioner and Level 1 NLP Coach, Level 3 Quantum Healing Reiki Practitioner, and BAAT accredited in the Foundation of Art Therapy. She has also participated in panel discussions, and podcasts talking about varying subjects such as challenges in leadership and entrepreneurship, investing in well-being, as well as motherhood and post natal depression. A master of ceremony, as well as official spokesperson, she left her corporate role as Head of Communications in local Government, to focus on bringing Therapie to life, to serve the community and to share her journey towards self- awareness, self-realisation, and being a creator of your own reality and destiny.

Michelle Dixon

Michelle Dixon

Michelle Dixon

Topic - Insights from Research in the Arts Therapies

Michelle Dixon currently works at a Children's Museum in Qatar, contributing to community mental health programming. Michelle has extensive experience working across the hospital environment including Oncology and Hematology and started the first pediatric Art Therapy hospital service in Qatar. Michelle has competed a Master of Art Therapy at La Trobe University, Australia. Registered with the Australian, New Zealand and Asian Arts Therapies Association.

Natalia Gómez Carlier

Natalia Gómez-Carlier

Natalia Gómez-Carlier

Natalia has a degree in Psychology from Universidad de Los Andes, a master’s in art therapy from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and is a Registered Board-Certified Art Therapist with the American Association of Art Therapy. Natalia is currently a Ph.D. student of Transpersonal Psychology at California Institute of Integral Studies. She was a co-founder and President of the Colombian Art Therapy Association, taught at universities, frequently presents at International Mental Health Conferences, and is a published author. She has practiced as a psychotherapist for more than 20 years in Bogota, Chicago, New York, Muscat, and now Dubai. Natalia is trained in psychodynamics and uses and adapts different techniques and modalities according to the needs of each individual. Incorporating techniques from CBT, Gestalt, Brief Therapy, Depth Psychology, Transpersonal, Mindfulness, and other modalities, therapy is oriented by the uniqueness of each individual. Natalia speaks English and Spanish fluently and is a 300HR Jivamukti Yoga Teacher.

Nisha L Sajnani

Nisha L Sajnani

Nisha L Sajnani

Dr. Nisha Sajnani, RDT-BCT, is the Director of the Program in Drama Therapy, and Chair of the Creative Arts Therapies Consortium at New York University Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development.

She also teaches at NYU Abu Dhabi where she developed a course entitled ‘Can Art Save Lives?’ to introduce students to current practices, research, and relevant policy. Dr. Sajnani is a founding Co-director of the Jameel Arts & Health Lab established in collaboration with the WHO to advance research and accelerate implementation of arts-based interventions for which there is good evidence.

She is currently co-leading a Lancet global series on the health benefits of the arts. An award-winning author, educator, and advocate, her body of work explores the unique ways in which aesthetic experience can inspire equity, care, and collective human flourishing across the lifespan.

Rawan Bajsair

Rawan Bajsair

Rawan Bajsair

Topic - Digital Art Therapy: Healing And Empowerment For Survivors Of Abuse And Violence

Rawan Bajsair is a Saudi art psychotherapist, visual artist, and author. Rawan holds a Bachelor of Science in Art Therapy from Lesley University and her Master of Arts in Art Therapy from NYU. She is a registered and board-certified art therapist by the American Art Therapy Association. Rawan wrote her first book chapter in Art Therapy Practices for Resilient Youth, published through Routledge in 2020. She has 10 years of experience working with children, adolescents, adults, and their families with variety of mental health challenges and disorders through creativity.

Savneet Talwar

Savneet Talwar

Savneet Talwar

Topic - Insights from Research in the Arts Therapies

Dr. Savneet Talwar is a Professor in the graduate art therapy and counseling program at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. As an interdisciplinary feminist scholar, researcher, educator, art therapist, and cultural worker her research is committed to socially engaged community-based art practices. Her publications highlight the importance of intersectionality, feminism, critical theories of difference, abolition pedagogy and social justice in art therapy. She is the author of Art Therapy for Social Justice: Radical Intersection and has published and guest edited volumes in Arts in Psychotherapy and Art Therapy: Journal of the American Art Therapy Association.

She is also the founder of the CEW (Creatively Empowered Women) Design Studio, a craft, sewing, and fabrication enterprise for Bosnian and South Asian women at the Hamdard Center in Chicago. She is the past Associate Editor of Art Therapy: Journal of the American Art Therapy Association.

Sara Powell

Sara Powell

Sara Powell

Sara is from the UK, a third culture kid who grew up in the Gulf. She is a registered psychotherapist (MBACP) with British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP), and a registered art psychotherapist with Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC, UK) and a member of British Association of Art Therapists (BAAT). Sara is a qualified clinical supervisor through Counselling and Psychotherapy Central Awarding Body (CPCAB, UK). Sara is currently pursuing her PhD in International Psychology from Chicago School of Professional Psychology, USA, with a specialization in Trauma, due for completion by mid-2024.

Sara is an experienced psychotherapist with over 12 years of clinical experience. She has worked with diverse populations, including children, adolescents, adults, families, and non-verbal population. Her passion lies in supporting women and children. As a mother, she recognized the need for perinatal and postnatal mental health services which prompted incorporation of Early Intervention and Development Services into ATIC's practice.

Trish Bedford

Trish Bedford

Trish Bedford

Trish is a visionary Art Psychotherapist, at Flourishing Minds Clinic, a consultant, clinical supervisor, activist, artist, Author, Entrepreneur, and Researcher, community wellness director of Flourishing Minds Consultants, founder/director, in private practice with TherapeuticART Global Ltd. And the country director for Qatar’s annual Global South Arts and Health Week.

Known for advancing art therapy in Qatar since 2016, she developed the first Expressive Arts Therapy service at an addiction wellness hospital, including the first art therapy museum and gallery visits in 2018. Trish and Flourishing Minds Clinic played a pivotal role in mandating art therapy licensing in Qatar in 2022.

She advocates against oppressive art therapy practices in education and is the first Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion Associate Editor for the International Journal of Art Therapy. She lectures in Art Therapy Master's programs at Hertfordshire University, Essex University, and Tavistock. With 20 years of art therapy, she integrates BIPOC-inclusive methods, utilizing brainspotting and somatic techniques to address organisational dynamics, adversity, and trauma.

Trish balances humanitarian and professional roles: Guatemala, Uganda, UK and France. In Calais 'The Jungle' (2015), her team of two researched volunteers needs, the first to highlight vicarious trauma. In six days, she established distribution centres, provided legal assistance, and created a sustainable online support system for volunteers and refugees across Europe. Hosted at Gaziantep QRC as a psychosocial adviser for Idlib, Syria, in 2018, Trish presented to World Health Organization (W.H.O) and NGOs. She facilitated psychoeducational groups and activities for Afghan refugees in Qatar, 2021 and facilitates QRC psychosocial team's supervision, 2023.

Trish engages in research, presents internationally, and collaborates to develop ethical global art therapy, promoting the transformative power of the arts for wellness, reduced stigma, and field advancement.

Wael Hassan

Wael Hassan

Wael Hassan

Dr Wael is a Mental Health Consultant, Addiction Therapist and Family Relationships Specialist at Family Development Foundation. He is a trainer and lecturer of Human Development and Quality of Life. Plus, a University Professor specialized in Psychology, He is a lecturer at diverse universities specialized in clinical psychology, critical thinking, and quality of life. Lecturer in various universities including Cairo University, Badr University, and the British University in Cairo. He is a member in Psycho-therapists League in Cairo and an accomplished various translated books in Psychology. He is an experienced family Relationships Consultant and Psycho-therapists trainer at family courts. He is also a consultant with Graduates Psychology Departments at Psychology Departments (clinical training).