Thanks to Clinical Psychologist Dr. Alexa Altman, Create Now provided a class in a Japanese art form called Kintsugi at Penny Lane in Northridge. Foster kids and young adults were taught how to glue pottery shards together to make something that was broken become much stronger. This ancient art is a metaphor for healing by embracing imperfections and turning them into unique and beautiful objects.

Participant Aida said, “I was having a bad week and this was the perfect activity to let out my frustrations. Once I completed my bowl, I felt complete.”

Alexa was delighted by the youths’ reactions. “Kintsugi honors the cracks in ourselves as a necessary part of our journey. These kids completely resonated with this philosophy and were eager to share their stories. During the class, I saw a lowering of some protective walls, more honesty, and such determination as they reconstructed their bowls.”

Another student said, “Looking at my bowl broken reminds me of losing my dad at a very young age.” Staff member Roberto declared, “Alexa was amazing with the workshop, and with our clients.”

Shiva Berjis, Director of Housing Services at Penny Lane said, “One client stated, ‘I don’t talk about my feelings, but I want to share them now with everyone.’ This was because of your workshop. Thank you for coming!”

We’re grateful for volunteers like Alexa who can make a profound difference in peoples’ lives with their skills and compassion for the youth Create Now serves.