Fluxx at the Welland Hospital and Autism social skills class!

I work with two groups my autism group and my hospital group. Both stories fit the same description. I volunteer in the mental health ward, doing group activities such as crafts and games. I also work with a group of boys with aspbergers syndrome. I always bring my fluxx cards as they are a favorite. On our first time playing we had a group of four (+me). We started out with family fluxx as its a little easier than the others. Everyone had a great time... Once everyone got the hang of it we played fluxx 4.0. We also gave zombie fluxx a try. It was fun. It was a great way of getting people to come out of their shells, to build confidence, to work on communication, turn taking and to laugh (the most important one of all). I am often asked if I brought my cards and if we can play. Right now I'm working on recreating the rules of Chrononaughts to meet the abilities of these wonderful groups of people.

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Comment by Karin Randall on August 19, 2012 at 8:36pm

I wish I could add some pics of my groups playing but due to confidentiality reasons I can not. I will try to get some pictures of my own two youngest playing.... its just hard to take pics of them playing as I am needed as a constant participant and referee..... 

Comment by Karin Randall on August 19, 2012 at 8:32pm

I FINALLY figured out how to add my pic! So anyone who was curious as to what I look like.... this is me. I am Canadian, I am sorry for not adding a pic of my igloo or my dog sled but its hard to get a good photo with all snow falling :) perhaps I ask the local polar bear to take one for me next time I see him....... hehehehe  

Comment by Karin Randall on August 1, 2012 at 9:58pm
Thanks for sharing that awsome story with me. You weren't rambling I enjoyed the response. It gets me that something so common as depression still is stigmatized. It's shameful of our society that even with all the open activism and campaigns people afflicted with it are treated as 'mental' and looked down upon. I think that it's great for people to talk openly about it and I encourage anyone who reads this to please share your stories and opinions. Communication and educatiion is the key to opening people up to understanding and respecting MI. Even a small 'community' like us can find a way to make a difference!
Comment by Bianca Ruffin on August 1, 2012 at 10:26am

The stigma makes me so sad. I have seen a young man (late teens/early twenties), who had a psychotic break recover in the most amazing way. He was found wandering the side of a highway in Tennessee, wild-eyed and disoriented. But his mother knew some people at NAMI who knew what services he needed. Thereafter, he went into treatment and worked at NAMI part-time... at first he was completely unable to connect with other people. But after about 3 months of steady treatment and work, he came out of his "shell" and was jovial, kind, funny and amazing to talk with. It's a moment that I will never forget so long as I live. People living with serious MI are still people. Just ill. It is truly incredible to watch positive progress.

Anyway, I'm just glad there are people like you around. I've noticed that most advocates have a relative or personal story that deals with mental illness, but that says a lot about how many people it's touched.

Ok, now I'm just rambling..


Comment by Karin Randall on August 1, 2012 at 2:07am
Thank you for your kind words. Both these groups are close to my heart, especially Autism group time. My boys have autism (Aspbergers), tourettes, ADHD, and are colour blind. Often these issues tend to occur together. My little guy only has ADHD. Mental illness still has a horrible stigmatism to it. There are alot of people can't and/or don't want to see the person for who they are. They see them as their affliction only. Alot of this is because they are ignorant to the issue and rely on jokes and misinformation about these syndromes because they are steriotyped in TV and movies (what they show are rare cases.ex/ Tourette's=yelling obscenities, schizophrenia= multiple personality disorder). Unfortunatly due to confidentiality issues I can't post pictures of group but I'll see if my 13 year old would like to pose with the games (he's a ham). I think it would be great to come up with a card game that mixes that Looney Lab FUN with some life skills.
Comment by Kristin Looney on July 31, 2012 at 6:23pm

This is wonderful, Karin, thank you for teaching with our games!

Please sign up for our Educators Forum so you can join in the discussion the next time we have a project that we need to consult with all our teacher friends...

Comment by Bianca Ruffin on July 31, 2012 at 11:22am

This is amazing! I have a great deal of experience in the mental health advocacy world and to hear this just warms my heart. ESPECIALLY because it deals with kids.

Thank you for sharing your story and if you ever have a chance to take some photos, I would love love love to see them!


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