Conferences, Symposiums & Talks

The Red Pencil Humanitarian Mission Presentation: Romanian Art Therapy Project for Ukranian Children

Date & Time

Fri 22 Sep 2023, 7:00pm – 9:00pm


Online, via Zoom


Free. Please register here for Zoom details



Amidst the upheaval caused by the conflict in Ukraine, countless individuals, particularly women and children, have been forced to abandon their homes, both within the country and beyond its borders. The repercussions of war have been deeply felt in Ukraine's neighbouring countries too. Many of those seeking refuge had already been enduring precarious circumstances before the war broke out.

In response to this pressing humanitarian crisis, The Red Pencil (Europe), in collaboration and with the support of Hope and Homes For Children Romania, implemented a project in Romania to bring the benefits of art therapy to children and teenagers who had arrived from Ukrainian institutions and placement centres.
Art therapists Irina Katz-Mazilu (Romania/France), Anca Ghearasămescu (Romania) and Yuliia Farafonova (Ukraine) served as supervisors and art therapists for the project, which enabled 18 children and adolescents who had fled war to participate in group and individual art therapy sessions. These sessions served as a vital pillar in their psychological recovery process, fostering not only healing but also resilience in the face of adversity.
In this presentation, the trio of art therapists will present their work with young victims of war and what they took away from this extremely challenging yet meaningful experience. Their presentation will show both the art therapy process and the artwork created in the workshops. Some theoretical references and methodical aspects will be discussed, as well as the specific frame of the mission. There will be a Q&A at the end of this presentation.
Note: Please be aware that this virtual talk will be recorded for the purpose of documentation and potential future sharing. Screenshots will also be taken during the event to capture key points, engaging discussions, and memorable moments. The screenshots could be used for promotional or informational purposes related to the event. Thank you.

About the speakers

Irina Katz-Mazilu was born in Romania and has resided in Paris for four decades. An esteemed figure in the field of art therapy, her background includes training in the ArtsTherapies MA/DU programme at the University of Paris, and she has practiced as an art therapist for over 20 years. Irina's professional engagements span diverse areas, from psychiatry to working with disabled individuals, migrants, prisoners and those dealing with PTSD. Her clientele encompasses people of all ages and genders.

Anca Ghearasămescu is a dedicated art therapist who hails from Bucharest, Romania. With a rich blend of experience and expertise, she has made a significant impact in the realm of art therapy. Anca's journey in the field began in 2017, and she continues to flourish as an art therapist at Phronetik®, extending her proficiency to various centres catering to children with autism, including her partnership with the Asociația Activity and Asociația ABCD. Since 2019, Anca has also taken on the role of a training assistant, imparting her insights through the Phronetik® art therapy training program in Romania.

Yuliia Farafonova, a proficient psychologist and certified art therapist, is originally from Ukraine but found her calling in Bucharest. Yuliia is a linguist who is fluent in Russian, Ukrainian and English. Her profound passion for art therapy began in 2010, and it became a vital tool in her work with children with special needs, teenagers and adults. In response to the traumatic events of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Yuliia employs her training in trauma management to aid victims.