Type of mission

Start-Up!: an arts therapy programme that aims to give support to the education of children affected by humanitarian crises through a professional train-the-trainer programme for teachers.

1 March – 31 May 2019 (to be updated)


El Callao, Lima, Peru

Partner organization

Fundación Integración Comunitaria (FIC)

Beneficiaries : 

180 children (approx.) 

19 caregivers

Art Therapists :

Dr Mercedes Ballbe ter Maat

With the Support of : 

The Red Pencil (International) expresses heartfelt gratitude to Trafigura Foundation and Faber-Castell for their generous support of this mission.


(updated 1 March – 31 May 2019)

The Red Pencil (International), partnered with Fundación Integración Comunitaria (FIC), the social arm of the Trafigura Group in Peru to implement an arts therapy programme called Start-Up! (Empecemos!) for the children under the care of FIC. 

The Start-Up (Empecemos!) programme was successfully implemented at FIC as part of the existing after-school programme, Tiempo Fuera, with 180 children registered at Tiempo Fuera’s three centres. The mission was led by registered arts therapist Dr Mercedes Ballbe ter Maat.

The Start-Up! Programme was designed to aid the healing of indigenous Native American children in a classroom setting. It is a year-long classroom intervention divided into four phases: Self-Phase, Problem Phase, Transformation Phase, and Integration Phase. The Programme includes art directives to “strengthen sensory and motor systems, develop the mind-body and allow children to discover new possibilities for their lives and their future."

With a high adaptability to any culture or ethnicity, the Start-Up! Programme is designed to help children and adolescents reduce anxiety, depression and aggression and guard against substance abuse, violent behaviour and suicide.

During the next phase, project Start-Up! will be continuously implemented. All the children attending Tiempo Fuera will be assessed by Dr. ter Maat again at the end of August, utilising the same two scales used at the start of the program. Finally, a trip in early December 2019 will be made to assess the children for the last step of the mission, bringing joy to the beneficiaries.


Type of mission

Art therapy residency

1 April – 1 October, 2018 (6 months)


Ayacucho, Peru

Partner organization

Diamanta (Solid Peru)

Beneficiaries : 

137 residents (15-19 years old) 

40 local staff


Simon Murray


The Red Pencil partnered with Diamanta, an organization based in Ayachuco, Peru, to help bring the power of arts therapy to young girls and women who have suffered the aftermath of war and conflict. The political conditions of the country and especially this region have left deep scars in the lives of the local people. They are always living in fear experience and consequently they trust no one.

According to the partner, people tend to hide their trauma and choose not to voice their experiences in a view to forget all of it. Many victims do not process the horrific experiences and as a result many suffer from substance abuse, post-traumatic disorder and anxiety issues. Additionally, intra-familial violence is reported in the communities of Ayacucho, which include violence among spouses, violence against children and cases of rape.

The mission brought together a multi-disciplinary team working alongside the arts therapist to enhance the psychosocial support of participants at different centres. The intention was to integrate this form of therapy into Diamanta’s framework of support to the young girls and women. The therapy sessions that were conducted used group arts therapy modality followed by staff training sessions. The mission was a Residency one that took place in a time period of 6 months. 



Our work here


Number of missions: 1

Global impact in Peru: 180 children and 19 caregivers


Programmes: Start-Up!


Number of missions: 1

Global impact in Peru: 137 residents (15-19 years old) and 40 local staff

Partners:Image result for diamanta ayacucho

Programmes: Art therapy residency