Community Partner Spotlight
VNA of the Treasure Coast Music Therapy Program
The Music Therapy Program provides services to VNA home health and hospice patients in Indian River County regardless of their ability to afford the service. In 2015, the transformational grant award from Impact 100 allowed the VNA to create the Music Therapy Program. Since 2015, music therapy has become an integral part of the VNA’s hospice services, providing an innovative approach to pain management, emotional expression, and overall improved quality of life. The VNA’s mission supports a healthy community, offering low-cost, or free services to those who cannot afford the care.
The music therapy program continues to strive for growth and excellence, training the highest quality interns and maintaining education and competence in its MT-BCs. Through Impact 100 funding we have been able to sustain this growth from one to four full-time MT-BCs and we plan to maintain this growth mindset by extending our reach and our services farther into the community. Ultimately, we would like to be able to expand music therapy to all the VNA’s service lines, including private care, to have a more robust home health music therapy program, and to offer music therapy to the community of vulnerable, at-risk populations.
The VNA offers music therapy free of charge to all patients, largely possible through the Impact 100 grant and additional funding. Since its inception and receiving the Impact 100 grant in 2015, the music therapy program has grown to house four full-time music therapists and two interns, allowing the team to provide services to hundreds of patients each year. These therapists not only care for the VNA patient community but also provide free programming to the Indian River County community at large. These programs are often supplied through the interns we are able to take on through grants and other funding.
Music therapy interns are required to develop a 6-week program, providing music therapy services to a population of their choice. We encourage our interns to select populations and organizations that are meaningful to them. Several of these 6-week programs have served populations with mental health needs, including a weekly group for at-risk youth in collaboration with the Gifford Youth Achievement Center, and a mental health support group at The Source, working with the homeless. These collaborations better our community, expose more residents to the benefits of music therapy and teach our interns the importance of community involvement.
In 2019 the VNA expanded its Music Therapy Program to include offering the same free music therapy service to its home health population. In addition to providing rehabilitative therapy to these patients, music therapy is one of the only programs that supports the patient’s mental health as they combat various illnesses. Our home health program also focuses on depression, anxiety, and mental health while treating the patient’s physical needs. Hospice and home health music therapy both foster a holistic approach to person-centered care treating our patient’s entire being from their shortness of breath to depression from the loss of their independence.
We have been able to fulfill our commitment to ensuring all hospice patients and families can receive music therapy as well as developing a national roster internship program thanks in part to the initial investment made with the Impact 100 grant. We continue to set goals to continue our expansion of music therapy services and are in the process of recruiting and hiring a 5th MT-BC that will allow us to meet the needs of our service lines as well as develop more community collaborations.
The VNA of the Treasure Coast is grateful for the support of the Impact 100 members. Volunteers are at the heart of the VNA and are a key resource to the agency. More than 400 dedicated individuals generously donate their time and talent to assist in various aspects of the VNA. There are a range of opportunities available to volunteer with the VNA. Whether it is interacting with patients, being an extra hand in the VNA Hospice House, providing assistance around the office, or providing support in our Hidden Treasures Thrift Stores, volunteers can be found in all aspects of our organization. For more information on how to become a VNA volunteer please visit www.vnatc.com/volunteeers or contact Sara Bumgarner at email@example.com.
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Rick and Mary Ellen McCarthy
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Impact 100 Indian River
We are women who collectively impact the lives of individuals and our community through transformational giving.
Registered Charity: CH-59372
PO Box 643425
Vero Beach, FL 32964