Sandplay Therapy Brings Relief; ; ;
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August 2018
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Sandplay Therapy Brings Relief

On May 3, 2018 Tutu Pele, the revered Goddess of the Volcano took her lava form on the Island of Hawai`i.  The eruption lasted three months and claimed over 750 homes in the lower Puna district.  While Pacific Quest is far from danger and unaffected by the volcano, we are motivated to help the Puna community. The PQ clinical team brought Sandplay Therapy to people who were forced to evacuate their homes.  Sandplay Therapy is a nonverbal, expressive method that alleviates symptoms of anxiety and distress following traumatic events.  Sandplay has been used effectively after 9-11 in New York City, mudslides in Thailand, earthquakes in China and Nepal, and the 2011 tsunami in Japan.

Our Clinical Director, Dr. Lorraine Freedle assembled the mobile sandplay collections, made possible with donations from sandplay therapists around the world.

                                             For more information, visit, Sandplay Thank You Video

Every week, therapists from PQ join with local sandplay therapists to bring sandplay therapy to the Pahoa shelter where the most vulnerable people are still accessing resources to get back on their feet.  As soon as we arrive, children and adults alike gather to create sand trays.  They are eager to tell their story and to release what is inside of them.  Twelve year old shelter resident Kauila (pseudonym) stated, “I like sandplay because it helps you get out all of your anger and fearness before bedtime.”


PQ therapists will soon begin sandplay therapy with students whose schools were displaced by the lava. The Pacific Quest Foundation provided monetary donations for their rebuilding efforts; now the therapists will follow-up with mental health services.

From Our Blog

Alumni Events

A Community Gardening Event

PQ has partnered with Sky’s the Limit Fund to help raise awareness into the transformational power of outdoor therapy, and invite our alumni, alumni families and colleagues to participate.

We will be in San Jose on Saturday, October 27th 9:45 a.m to  12:30 pm at Veggielution Community Farm in the Emma Prusch Park, 647 King Rd., San Jose, California.

No experience necessary!  DIG: Dream, Inspire, and Grow as you lend a helping hand as an urban farmer and tend the garden. Learn about Sky’s the Limit Fund mission and listen to Mike Sullivan, MA, LMHC, Alumni & Family Services Director at Pacific Quest, speak about horticulture therapy.  Most importantly though – let’s get our hands dirty giving back to the community and enjoy some time together.

Space is limited so click to register today.

Says the Limit Fund


Reaching for the Stars Breakfast

PQ will be at the Sky’s the Limit Fund breakfast fundraiser on Friday, October 26,  7:30 to 9:30 am, at the Crowne Plaza, Palo Alto.  The Reaching for the Stars Breakfast features outdoor therapy alumni speakers and enthusiasts wanting to support access to outdoor therapy for those who can’t afford it.

Hereʻs the event and registration page.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out!


Eat Local Initiative

It's Harvest Time at Reeds Bay!

Pacific Quest’s Young Adult Program Kitchen Supervisor Annette Nickontro gives us an update on the Eat Local Initiative at Reeds Bay.

I’m so grateful for the grub we get to grow!  Summer is here and our harvest was no joke – 255 pounds worth of beautiful leafy greens, herbs and a huge chunk of weight coming from jackfruit and those white and yellow pineapples we’d been waiting for!  We cut, cooked and pureed 117 pounds from the harvest, some pineapples still waiting on the shelf to be eaten.

Harvest at Reeds Bay

We tore into a 31 pound jackfruit and made vegan pulled pork twice!  Wellness coordinators rallied the students and guides for a second pickling class using excess green papayas and slightly young white pineapples. Students took advantage of fresh flavor by adding the likes of rosemary, dill, Hawaiian hot peppers, ginger, garlic, onion, turmeric, basil, and habaneros.

Jackfruit harvest at Reeds Bay

To keep the garden bounty going, students and staff got their fingers in the soil and transplanted keiki tomato, basil, cilantro, cucumber, beans, egg plant, brussels sprouts, and at least 4 kinds of peppers.

We look forward to next month’s harvest!

News and Events

PQ on the Move!

Upcoming Events

October 17-19, 2018

5th Annual YATA Conference. Mike Sullivan, MA, LMHC, presents

“Back to the Future: Preparing Young Adults for Transition in the Age of Technology.”

Team PQ looks forward to connecting with friends & colleagues at the

NATSAP Midwest, Southeast and Northeast Conferences,  See you there!

November 7-9, 2018

IECA– Los Angeles

Dr. Britta, ND, presents, “Integrative Psychiatry: The Best of Both Worlds. Integrative Medicine’s role in the therapeutic settings.”

November 8-11, 2018
STA National Conference

Dr. Lorraine Freedle,  PhD, ABPdN, will be presenting on multiple days.

“Maui Bringer of Light:  Healing Stories for Dark Times.”

“Treating Generalized Anxiety Disorder Using Sandplay Therapy:
Is Clinical Improvement Associated with Metabolite Changes in the Thalamus Using Proton MR Spectroscopy?”

“Trauma and the Recovery of Lost Innocence” – Keynote with Donald Kalsched, PhD

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