Ranch & Coast Magazine

December 2022

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family bonding," says Blaisus. Music also has a direct impact on how we perceive pain. "If you are in pain, basically your brain can only concentrate on so many things at once, and music temporarily takes over some of the brain that's being used for pain so that you will physically experience less pain because your brain is busy listening to music," she says. Contributions to Resounding Joy can include both monetary donations as well as instrument and equipment donations like iPads, which are used for music games and even to display digital sheet music for therapists. is month, the public is invited to learn more about the work of Resounding Joy on December 16 when it hosts a free holiday open mic event at its Sorrento Valley Music Wellness Center, featuring light snacks, original music, and an opportunity to join in the music making holiday merriment. resoundingjoyinc.org Episcopal Community Services A frequent buzzword we hear in conversations surrounding human assistance organizations is "dignity." And that's exactly what Episcopal Community Services endeavors to infuse in the spectrum of services it offers addressing issues like homelessness, substance use disorders, and mental and behavioral health in San Diego County. rough charitable donations it receives, ECS fills the gaps that still remain even as grants and government funding support core programs. "We're trying to treat people like people," says Tim Whipple, ECS Interim Development Director, and someone when they think it's not possible. We can make a human connection with someone who thought they could never communicate with their Alzheimer's parent again because music brought something out in them. We've helped people come out of a coma through music. ere are just so many vast ways that music is universal." "We live at the intersection between arts and health," says Jess Blaisus, Resounding Joy's director of engagement. "ere's a constant challenge as far as advocacy goes to share what music therapy is because it is evidence-based and there's a lot of very cool science that backs it up — not just the passive music [experience], because music itself has plenty of benefits, but the application of those interventions in therapeutic relationships. It's like physical therapy versus an aerobics instructor." e nonprofit reaches about 3,000 San Diegans a year, working with the military and first responders (through Resounding Joy's Sounds of Service program), children (though the Ariana Miller Healing Notes program), and throughout the community, including seniors, the homeless, and anyone facing mental, physical, and emotional health challenges, and its results are measurable. For example, says Blaisus, in participating patients at Rady Children's Hospital, therapy has been found to lower and stabilize heart rate, improve respiration rate, and improve blood oxygen saturation. In other areas, "people have indicated decreases in anxiety and stress, improvements in mood and emotional expression, progress toward speech goals, and >> ranchandcoast.com @ranchandcoast RANCH & COAST MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2022 43 Music therapy is not just for people who are having extreme circumstances in their lives," says Jess Blaisus, Resounding Joy's director of engagement. "This is for anybody who's facing any type of challenge in their life" RESOUNDING JOY: COURTESY PHOTO

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