During the day, Angela Brown is part of the crisis team and a community liaison at North York General Hospital’s Branson site. For 20 years, she was a surgical assistant with a large dental practice in Ajax. In her spare time, she is a part-time student at ISIS, studying to be certified as an expressive art therapist. She also studies at European Graduate School, working toward her Masters in expressive arts therapy. Angela is a working artist, a board member and a facilitator for Art With A Heart. She dances multiple forms including tap, hip hop, jazz, worship, indigenous contemporary, masked and storytelling. Recently, she added face and body painting and wire art to her artistic repertoire, which includes being a mixed media artist.
For Angela, Art With A Heart is about working with people to help them heal themselves. Before joining the arts-based charity, she ran a talk therapy group through Community Living for COPE, the mental health agency. She also ran an art program for Lakeridge Health in Oshawa, where she worked with elderly people who had experienced a stroke or had some level of dementia. Her volunteer work also included traveling to Cambodia and Malawi on humanitarian trips. Angela is trained in suicide prevention, communications skills and facilitation.
When asked why she joined Art With A Heart, she said: “I have had the most growth, peace, introspection and insightful ideas when I was engaged in artistic creativity. I believe being creative shows a way of communicating that traditional learning doesn’t. I hope that the people we reach through Art With A Heart find similar growth. I love people and love bringing out the best in them.”
Angela is an award-winning artist. She won the first and second prize from the Canadian Legion for a Remembrance Day poster she submitted after high school. And, she was recently honored with the Women’s Opportunity Award from Soroptimist. In Fall 2011, Angela performed with the Daystar Dance Company.
She continues to develop her art by exploring different styles and mentoring with Executive Director Sheri Gundry. In 2011, she earned her Artist-Educator – Level One certificate as part of the Royal Conservatory’s Learning Through the Arts program (LTTA). Angela earned a bachelor degree in psychology from Trent University, and already holds a dental assistant certificate from Durham College. She is currently enrolled in a three-year Arts Therapist training program with ISIS Toronto.