If you are a teaching artist, performer, dancer, musician, arts organization, or other creative, click the button below.

"The arts community has a long history of being innovative and taking responsibility.

It's time to responsibly train artists, arts organizations and educators to be more mindful of the mental health needs of their communities."


Azizi Marshall



Mental Health for the Arts is a 16-hour, 2-day course that teaches arts organizations, educators and artists how to help someone who is developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. The training helps you identify, understand, and respond to signs of addictions and mental illnesses in order to get them the help they need.


Mental Health for the Arts is designed to teach arts organizations and educators, dancers, musicians, theatre directors, actors, teaching artists, photographers, painters, sculptors, choreographers, visual artists, singers, drummers, and other creatives how to help individuals who are experiencing a mental health or addictions challenge or is in crisis.

Helping you to address the mental health needs of the communities you serve.

Helping arts educators, artists and organizations identify and address the mental health needs of the communities they serve.

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1 in 5 adults experience a mental illness every year


Learn what to do when a mental health crisis occurs


Know how, when and where to get help


Be the first line of defense for suicide prevention



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Risk factors and warning signs of mental health issues.

A concrete action plan to help someone developing a mental health problem or in crisis.


Pertinent information on suicide, depression, trauma, anxiety, psychosis, and addiction disorders.

Where to turn for help — professional, peer, and self-help resources.



The Mental Health for the Arts course is 16 hours long, taken over 2 days. In order to best fit your needs, it may be offered all in two days or over four shorter sessions.


Active and engaged learning helps you get involved with the material and relating what you learn to real-life applications. Role plays, discussion topics, arts-based experientials, engaging exercises, and other fun activities keep you engaged in the course and give you an opportunity to practice helping skills.


One or two certified instructors from the Center for Creative Arts Therapy lead each course and follow a national curriculum and teaching standards, while emphasizing hope for healing. Classes usually consist of 30 people or less and are offered in a safe, respectful and comfortable learning environment.

*PLEASE NOTE: This training does NOT certify or license you as a mental health professional, psychologist, counselor, social worker or drama, art, music, art or expressive arts therapist. You will need to earn a masters degree from an accredited school of higher education, fulfill all practicum and internship requirements, and pass a national or state licensing exam (depending on your chosen profession and state licensing laws). 


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1 in 5 adults experience a mental health illness each year.


The Adult Mental Health for the Arts course is appropriate for anyone age 18 and older who wants to learn how to help an adult who may be experiencing a mental health related crisis or problem. 



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Over 50% of youth in America aged 6-17 are diagnosed with a mental health disorder.


The Youth Mental Health for the Arts course is primarily intended for adults to learn how to help young people experiencing mental health problems or crises. It reviews the unique risk factors and warning signs of mental health issues in children and adolescents ages 1-18 and emphasizes the importance of early intervention.


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Over 60% of adults have experienced some form of trauma as a child.


The Trauma Mental Health for the Arts course is appropriate for anyone working with populations experiencing trauma or loss. Specialized training offers further knowledge and action plans for trauma specific issues.


Learn more about how to become trauma informed in order to best meet the needs of your community.


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Matt Mitchell

Teaching Artist

That was one of the most meaningful, effective professional development sessions I have ever attended. Thank you!

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Paramount School of the Arts

Teaching Artist Training was packed with great moments today. Azizi Marshall from Center for Creative Arts Therapy was a highlight; giving us great strategies to bring trauma-informed care into our classrooms.

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Thalia Grey

Theatre Teacher

One of the most comprehensive trainings on mental health I have ever experienced. Engaging, fun and meaningful! Now I know how to better help my community.


The Center for Creative Arts Therapy offers specialized training programs for drama therapy, psychodrama, expressive arts therapy and theatre for social change.

Click on the button below for more information.

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Let us inspire and guide you towards healing the world through the arts.


The Center for Creative Arts Therapy's Training Programs offer coursework in the following professional disciplines: Drama Therapy, Expressive Arts Therapy, Therapeutic Performing Arts, Theatre of the Oppressed, Creativity in Counseling and Psychodrama.


For more information on Creative Arts Therapy training programs, compassionately creative counseling services and arts-based psychotherapists in Chicago and the DuPage area, call us at (847) 477-8244, email us, or visit us at 2600 Warrenville Rd., Suite 205, Downers Grove, IL  60515.