McLaren Flint Foundation
Healing Through Art

Healing Through Art

Healing Through Art is a collaborative effort between McLaren Flint and the Flint Institute of Arts and is dedicated to the promotion of healing for cancer patients through the creative visual arts process. This resource is provided free of charge to cancer patients.

  • According to a study in the Journal of Pain and Management, art therapy was shown to decrease pain, tiredness, depression, anxiety, drowsiness, lack of appetite and shortness of breath after sessions in art therapy.
  • The creative process serves to help patients and caregivers express thoughts and feelings in a non-verbal way with the support of a trained art therapist.

Opportunities for Patients and Caregivers  

All programs and materials are free of charge. No prior art experience is necessary, just a willingness to play, create and explore. Programs are available to anyone over the age of 18 (unless specified otherwise) who has experienced cancer or been a caregiver, friend or family member to someone with cancer. To reserve your spot and to learn about which programs are right for you, please contact Erin Keith at (810) 342-4206.

Individual Sessions:  Patients are able to meet with the art therapist privately in her office by appointment or during a chemotherapy session in the medical oncology suite at Karmanos Cancer Institute.

Art Therapy Group Sessions: The art therapist facilitates weekly art therapy groups to families touched by cancer. This includes survivors in treatment, after treatment and their family members. Therapeutic and educational themes are integrated to build a supportive and caring environment to share, heal, learn and grow. Art Therapy Groups are offered with no fee for individuals with cancer and their families. Registration is required.

Art Therapy Workshops:  The Flint Institute of Arts (FIA) and Karmanos Cancer Institute at McLaren Flint offer a one-of-a-kind partnership that provides art therapy workshops to the greater cancer community. These programs provide an opportunity for creativity and healing through the art-making process. Workshops are offered with no fee for individuals with cancer and their families. Registration is required.


  • To facilitate health and wellness through the use of art therapy
  • To add beauty to the healthcare site
  • To provide an ongoing art experience, even after treatment ends
  • To provide art therapy to individuals while undergoing chemotherapy and radiation
  • To further McLaren Flint's commitment to the Greater-Flint Community to provide state-of-the-art treatment services to our patients through evidence-based practices

Meet the Art Therapist

Erin comes to the McLaren/FIA Program with a strong background in art therapy. She received her master’s degrees in Art Therapy at Wayne State University.

Erin Keith
Erin Keith, M.Ed, ATR
Registered Art Therapist


The art therapy program at McLaren is funded through the generous gifts of patrons in the community. The FIA and McLaren Flint Foundation are grateful to all of the individuals and organizations that are supporting this collaboration. A special thank you is extended to the Genesee Health Plan, Stella & Frederick Loeb Charitable Trust and the McLaren Flint Auxiliary Volunteers, without their support this special program would not be possible.

If you are interested in making a financial gift in support of Healing Through Art, please contact the McLaren Flint Foundation at (810) 342-4087 or you can make your donation here