Saturday April 9, 2016
Acadiana Center for the ArtsFree and Open to the Public

An interactive symposium to educate our community about the benefits of the arts as a vessel towards healing. This event aims to bring awareness towards using creative expression and the creative process for emotional well-being, asking the question, Can our authentic creativity be a link towards emotional health? The day brought together some of Acadiana's leading arts therapists and creative healing practitioners with over 100 people in attendance!


Thank you to everyone who attended! It was an incredible day of community building and conversation about the power of creativity, play and the arts towards healing and emotional well-being. 

Continue the conversation with us by joining the Creating Resilience Google Group


CREATING RESILIENCE developed as a community outreach event connected to
Clare Cook Dance Theater's upcoming production of Touching Loss
at Acadiana Center for the Arts.


Touching Loss, an original dance play, is an intimate story of seven individuals in a dance therapy group confronting their own personal losses. Through dance, we peel away the layers of grief to find the beauty of vulnerability and the importance of human physical connection as a vessel for peace and vitality. Touching Loss will be brought to life by seven Acadiana dancers who have been rehearsing in Lafayette since January and includes text by Leah Miles and original music by Paul Castles, both of New York City.




Panelists and Workshop Facilitators Included:

Peter Bulliard, Drummer and Shahman
Fran Clarke, Sound Therapy
Clare Cook, Healing Dance
Hollie French, Art Therapy
Caroline Helm, Drama for Authentic Expression
Jessica Gibson Kendrick, Counseling through Yoga
Dr. Latifey Lafleur, Play Therapy
Cherie Mills, Trauma and Grief Counseling
Alyce Morgan, Franklin Method
Sue Schleifer, Healing through Writing
Chuck St. Romain, Mindfulness Meditation


Panel Discussion included...
How can different artistic disciplines serve different populations for mental health?
What role does ‘intention’ have in both the creative process and the healing process?
Can Acadiana’s population of creative people find new ways to think about emotional health?
Can creative arts therapies and mind-body awareness practices be a link towards a greater understanding and destigmatizing mental health care?
Can tapping into our creativity allow us to express authenticity and know ourselves more deeply to become the most dynamic and resilient people we can be?  


Mini-Workshops: experience a taste of creative healing! 




 Meet our Presenters and Practitioners


Peter Bulliard, after beginning his research into energy medicine in 1978, has traveled and studied extensively in South America and also has trained with many Master Level Teachers from all over the world. He is an Integrated Energy Therapy Master-Instructor and certified to teach Rose Meditation, Aura Reading, and Master Level Shamanic trainings. Peter experienced serious illness in the past and has used it as an opportunity for great personal growth, spiritual understanding and healing. For a complete bio: 

“My passion and mission are in the study, integration, and sharing of this spiritual, healing path with others.” - Peter Bulliard



Fran Clarke is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in private practice for twenty-eight years.  From those earliest days as a psychotherapist, she recognized the need for expansion of thinking and treatment from that of separation of mind and body to integrative perspectives and treatment applications.  She has received recognition for her leading roles in initiating various community projects and programs which promote holistic health.  She travels to foreign and ancient sites for study, deepening spirituality and to give workshops and conference presentations.  She is the Founder of Yassah’s Sisters, a pay-it-forward agricultural initiative which helps women in remote villages in Liberia, West Africa to recover lives devastated by war and to create sustainable futures. For the past fifteen years, many women in Acadiana have benefited from the transformational group that Fran has developed and facilitated—The Heroine’s Journey:  A Woman’s Search for Truth. She has certifications in The Bonny Method of Guided Imagery & Music, VibraSound therapy, inTime Listening Program (through Advanced Brain Technology), Cymatherapy, tuning forks, and Himalayan and crystal bowls. Fran believes Sound Therapy can restore harmony to body, mind, spirit and emotions and when the body is in balance, healing can happen. Her work has changed many lives, enabling individuals to live more authentically, to take personal responsibility for creating lives with passion, integrity and vitality and to develop deep inner resilience, which equips one to face the inevitable difficulties of life.  This, she firmly believes, is the anecdote to the epidemic of anxiety, depression and stress-related illness.While continuing Sound Therapy in individual sessions, Fran is in the process of developing continuing education seminars for professionals and Sound Circle experiences for the public. She is available to bring sound sessions to offices and organizations.

Good Vibrations! Sound, Music and Vibrational Therapies
As far back as 40,000 years ago ancient Australian Aboriginal people used the didgeridoo for healing.  According to the leading scientists and researchers, sound and vibration are the medicine of the future, replacing symptom and pharmaceutical focused treatment with gentle yet profound music, sound and vibrational processes which alleviate the source of the imbalance and restore health and well-being to the whole system. Cymatherapy and VibraSound therapy are known as Vibrational Therapy.  Both operate on the principle that specifically focused sound and vibration applied to the physical body re-balances disharmony caused by stress, thereby restoring harmony of body, mind, spirit, emotions. A VibraSound session involves lying comfortably on a massage table equipped with sound transducers while specifically chosen music is listened to through headphones.  Intention-setting, aromatherapy, Tibetan and crystal bowls, gongs and chimes are used to gently coax the participant away from the concerns of the outer world to enable them to rest quietly in their inner world.  Typically, a very deep state of relaxation is achieved.  When stress-free, the body’s innate healing is activated and many benefits are realized.  Each session is different for every person. Cymatherapy uses the AMI750 instrument to deliver precise combinations of frequencies to address a wide variety of stress-related physical, mental and emotional concerns.  When applied to the body, these sound waves help to normalize imbalances and bring it back to its natural healthy state of vibrational resonance. Cymatherapy supports the bodymind’s natural ability to heal itself. Frequency programs are applied through the meridian pathways of the feet while the participant relaxes or listens to calming music.  These techniques usually deliver phenomenal, fast and lasting results.

Clare Cook is the Artistic Director of Clare Cook Dance Theater and has choreographed professionally in NYC since 2008. Projects include choreography for HERE Arts Center, NY Theatre Barn’s Choreography Lab, Ars Nova, Berkshire Fringe, Planet Connections Festival (Best Choreography Award), NYU, Columbia Stages, New School for Drama, and multiple operas with Opera Slavica. Most recently, she was the choreographer for the national tour of Bullets Over Broadway, re-staging the work of Susan Stroman from the Broadway production. Past teaching work: Adjunct positions at NYU/Tisch Dance and Louisiana State University, Movement Specialist with the Metropolitan Opera Guild, Dancewave Brooklyn, and serving as the Education Director for the Lar Lubovitch Dance Company. Clare holds an MFA in Dance from NYU and her company, Clare Cook Dance Theater, finds a new creative home in Louisiana after its beginnings in New York City in 2011. The company is committed to creating and producing original dance theater projects that merge multiple art forms through artistic collaboration, as well as providing community based outreach opportunities fostering the growth of arts education, creativity and artistry in all people.

Healing Dance
Clare Cook is currently partnering with Miles Perret Cancer Services to teach Healing Dance to clients the MPCS Wellness Center. Healing Dance is a class where body, mind and spirit come together through authentic movement and dance. You’ll find new ways of expression physically and emotionally, tap into your creative self and gain strength and mobility. Most of all, we find joy dancing together. This class is open to anyone. No dance ability required just a sense of exploration and willingness to get moving!


Hollie French received her Master's Degree in Counseling Psychology and Art Therapy from what is now Adler University in Chicago. She is originally from Louisiana and returned in 2007 to work in Lafayette. In 2013, she opened her private practice, Hollie French Art Therapy and Counseling. She has also been an adjunct instructor at South Louisiana Community College and currently contracts with two behavioral health hospitals to provide art therapy groups to adolescents, Veterans, and other adults. She has facilitated various workshops for professionals in the area and serves on the board as Past President for the Louisiana Art Therapy Association. Artistic expression and creativity have been a life-long guiding force, providing her with an emotional outlet, a way to make sense of life experiences, a mirror for her inner self, and a tool to uncover goals and dreams, among many other invaluable gifts.  She cherishes the opportunity to utilize her professional and personal experience to help others discover and tap into their own creativity in order to assist them in living more full, authentic, balanced, and healthy lives. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Registered Art Therapist. 

Creating Mandalas: “Sacred Circles” for Meditation, Relaxation, and Insight
Circle drawings/ paintings/ mosaics/etc. have been used in spiritual, religious, and meditative practices for centuries. In essence, mandalas are visual forms of meditation, and creating one engages the individual in that meditative process. The eye is naturally drawn to the center of a circle creating a focal point, and the circle provides safety and security though containment of whatever emotions or experiences are expressed within. They are useful tools for coping as they induce a relaxing, soothing state and aid in healing. The mandala can also symbolize the self, providing a snapshot of the individual's inner state at the time it was created and a visual aid for reflection and understanding our selves and our behavior. In this session, you will create an original mandala and have the opportunity to begin to explore what meanings your mandala might hold for you. No artistic skills are needed.

Caroline Helm, Licensed Clinical Social Worker and native of Lafayette, has a mental health private practice that is growing toward creativity and performance coaching.  Caroline has worked in the mental health field for 10 years and considers herself to be a late bloomer creatively speaking.  Caroline started tinkering around on the guitar at 28 years old and from there, she went on to form The Figs, acted in a couple of films and several plays, and created several live performances including The Nue Moon Revue, an old time variety show featuring up and coming songwriters in Acadiana. Caroline has experienced the inner struggles of pushing through creative barriers and also has been on the other side, helping others to see beyond their perceived limitations.


Drama for Authentic Expression
Expressing Truth or authenticity through drama can be very cathartic.  Being the voice of another character is a safe place to act out truths/hurts/vulnerabilites that exist within all of us.  Scripts are written by real people. Broken people. People creating stories about people. And we are those same people. I will bring scripts from a few plays or films for you to dare to explore your own truths and vulnerabilites.  


Jessica Gibson Kendrick is both a Yoga Teacher and Professional Counselor practicing in Lafayette, LA. She believes physical, mental and emotional well-being are deeply interwoven. Jessica offers Yoga Therapy to individuals as a holistic approach to healing the mind and body. Jessica uses vinyasa and restorative classes to create a calm and judgement free space where you can explore both your foundation and your limits. Jessica believes the practice is not about being good at something, it’s about being good to yourself and having a little fun along the way! Jessica completed SUP Yoga Certification with Stoked Yogi and AirCat Level 1 Aerial Yoga Teacher Training. Jessica Gibson Kendrick is a Registered Yoga Teacher (E-RYT 200) with Yoga Alliance, which acknowledges the completion of a yoga teacher training with an approved and active Registered Yoga School (RYS). Learn more about Jessica. 

Counseling with Yoga as a Modality
Counseling with Yoga participants will have an opportunity to explore various movements and postures, including breath work, aimed at alleviating stress and creating a balanced sense of well-being. Prior Yoga experience is not necessary and all are welcome.


Dr. Latifey LaFleur earned a B.S. in Psychology in 2000 and a M.S. degree in Applied Psychology in 2002 from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. She completed her Ph.D degree in Counselor Education at the University of New Orleans in May 2007. Dr. LaFleur is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Supervisor (LPC-S), a Registered Play Therapist-Supervisor and a Trained Forensic Interviewer. She has over ten years of clinical experience as a professional counselor, specializing in mental health and child abuse and neglect. She has previously served as a licensed mental health professional (LMHP) working with adults, adolescents, and children with serious mental illness or emotional disturbances; and as a clinical director of a children's advocacy center (CAC) working with victims of abuse. She established her independent practice in 2008 providing clinical services to children, adolescents, and adults. Dr. LaFleur has specialized training in play therapy and play therapy supervision. She is a member of the Association for Play Therapy and is a regional chair for the Louisiana Association for Play Therapy. Dr. LaFleur joined the Department of Counselor Education Faculty in 2008 and has developed several new courses in play therapy which she now teaches. She has taken the leadership in an effort to have the program designated as a Recognized Play Therapy Education Site. Dr. LaFleur has presented at state and national conferences, published peer reviewed articles and a book chapter, has been awarded several grants, and assisted in the development of community resources. She has served as a board member for the Louisiana Association for Counselor Educators and Supervisors and currently serves on the editorial boards for the Journal of Mental Health Counseling and the Journal of Creativity in Mental Health. Other professional affiliations include, the American Counseling Association, Association for Counselor Education and Supervision, Louisiana Counseling Association, and Louisiana Association for Counselor Education and Supervision.

Sandtray Therapy with Dr. Lafleur and UL Lafayette Graduate Students
Sandplay is hands on psychological work. It is a powerful therapeutic technique that facilitates the psyche’s natural capacity for healing.Sandtray In a “free and protected” space provided by the analyst, a client creates a concrete manifestation of his or her imaginal world using sand, water, and miniature objects. In this way Sandplay helps honor and illuminate the client’s internal symbolic world and provides a place for its expression within a safe container, the tray filled with sand. Sandplay is done adjunctively to talk therapy during the process of the therapeutic work. In Sandplay a scene is made from figures and objects placed in a box of sand. The construction of the scene is guided almost entirely by the choices made by the hands of the client, while the analyst watches nearby in respectful silence.


Cherie Mills, a licensed clinical social worker, received her MSW from LSU in 1993 and has been working with children, adolescents and adults in various settings including medical and psychiatric hospitals, public schools, group homes for children and adolescents, residential and outpatient care for adults with diagnoses of substance abuse and mental illness. She has been working as a psychotherapist in her private practice since 2008 seeing adolescents and adults for one and one and family sessions. She specializes in the integration of traditional talk therapies with mind/body energy psychology methods. Learn more about Cherie.


Alyce Morgan is the owner of Embody Zest! an exercise studio, that offers Pilates, Aerial Yoga, Franklin Method and many other wonderful classes and workshops. Alyce's teaching motivation is to have people feel good so they can live their life "with spontaneous zest and pleasure" and go dancing! She brought Pilates to Lafayette in 1997 and the Franklin Method in 2013. She is a lover of dance and an aspiring ukulele train-riding hobo.



Imagery and the Art of Change (Franklin Method)
The Franklin Method (not the Feldenkrais method) uses dynamic imagery, anatomical embodiment and educational skills to create lasting positive change in your body and mind. With the Franklin Method you learn how to use your brain to improve your body’s function. It can be applied to improve all of your abilities and it all starts with the knowledge that we have the power to change.

Chuck St. Romain, LCSW is a licensed clinical social worker in private practice with over 35 years of experience. He has been practicing meditation for over 20 years. He is a co-founder of Spirit Path Meditation and Spiritual Enrichment Center that offers opportunities for meditation including meditation retreats and courses in the Vipassana or Insight Meditation tradition. Learn more about Sprit Path.



Mindfulness Meditation
The Meditation Workshop will include a review of the benefits of meditation and teaching of basic meditation technique. The workshop also will include a period of sitting meditation followed by time for questions and answers. This workshop is available to those new to meditation as well as experienced meditators.


Sue Schleifer, MA/PCC, is a credentialed Life and Career Coach, Leadership Development Consultant, and Writer who especially enjoys helping people find and express their creativity. She is the author of The Key to the Castle: Zen and Travel Stories of Trust, about inner and outer journeys, and Cultivating a Mindful Life. Since 2009 Sue has led writing workshops entitled, “Writing Down Dementia” designed to provide a creative outlet and healing for adults caring for a loved one with dementia. Sue is a lifelong dancer. Learn more about her work and books at Oak Communications -


Writing a Way Toward Healing
The process of writing is a way to more fully experience, make connections with, and understand life’s journey. It is a way toward healing. In this workshop, we will experience short writing exercises that are fun, supportive, and evoke reflection. Bring a notebook and a pen. No writing experience necessary.