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The Community Foundation of Mendocino County Saves the Day


UKIAH, calif. – In its fourth year, the Focus on Healing Art Therapy program at Adventist Health Ukiah Valley has more than doubled the number of cancer patients served. The program has been generously supported by a grant from the T.R. Eriksen Foundation since its inception in 2015 in order to offer it free of charge to patients dealing with cancer, regardless of where they receive medical care.

“The Foundation’s Trustees were very impressed with the concept and program location when it first began,” remarked Oncology Patient Navigator Angle Slater, RN. “After the fires of 2017, the Art Institute of the Redwoods in Redwood Valley was no longer a suitable location and the search has been ongoing for a new place.”

For more than a year, art therapy sessions have taken place in a hospital conference room. “I am happy to report that thanks to continued support from the Eriksen Foundation and additional funding from the Save-the-Day Grants Program of The Community Foundation of Mendocino County a new location has been found at the Alex Rorabaugh Recreation Center,” explains program facilitator Susan Sweet, MFT-ATR.

“I am most grateful to these foundations for making it possible for the group to stay together in a comfortable, safe place for group art therapy,” comments Susan, “Studies show that patients suffer less pain when they are engaged in artistic activities and the mood and quality of life are enhanced. Engaging in artmaking is emotionally energizing, restorative and promotes healing on many levels.”

Eight week sessions continue throughout the year on Fridays, from 9:30am to 1:00pm at the Alex Rorabaugh Recreation Center. For more information about the healing benefits of group art therapy, contact Sue Sweet at (707)671-5122 or

Adventist Health Ukiah Valley is part of Adventist Health, a faith-based, nonprofit integrated health system serving more than 80 communities on the West Coast and Hawaii. Founded on Seventh-day Adventist heritage and values, Adventist Health provides care in hospitals, clinics, home care agencies, hospice agencies and joint-venture retirement centers in both rural and urban communities. Our compassionate and talented team of 35,000 includes associates, medical staff physicians, allied health professionals and volunteers driven in pursuit of one mission: living God's love by inspiring health, wholeness and hope. Together, we are transforming the American healthcare experience with an innovative, yet timeless, whole-person focus on physical, mental, spiritual and social healing.