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Appointment of new director reflects growing need

News release bailey - 1
April 29, 2008

Appointment of new director reflects growing need for music therapy

The growing demand for music therapy in New Zealand is a major factor behind the choice of a new director for the country’s only dedicated music therapy centre.

The Raukatauri Music Therapy Centre (RMTC) in Auckland has appointed former Unitec institute relations director Anne Bailey to head its operations.

Ms Bailey’s employment mandate entails not only the day-to-day running of the centre but also the development of its three to five-year strategic plan.

RMTC research shows there is a huge potential demand for music therapy*. The appointment reflects the need for professional management to grow the centre in order to meet that demand.

Ms Bailey says there are two issues to the challenge.

“Obviously funding is a big one as we don’t currently get any government assistance,” she says.

“As well, our challenge at the centre is to play a key role in growing the discipline of music therapy, which doesn’t yet have a high profile in New Zealand, though it’s great there’s now the Masters programme in music therapy at the NZ School of Music.”

Two factors are behind Ms Bailey’s decision to accept the RMTC role.

“A strong motivation has been the opportunity to have a more direct input into the culture and values of an organisation,” she says. “But I was also very much attracted to the kaupapa of RMTC, which is to change and enrich lives through music.”

While the challenges are many, Ms Bailey says the job is stimulating.

“The therapists are amazing; the board brings a huge amount of experience, talent and support to the task; and music therapy is such a tremendous treatment. The music therapists probably wouldn’t want me to call it magical, but it seems that way to me.”

With a B.Sc. from Canterbury University, Ms Bailey has a background in communications.

After a career in TV and print journalism in Wellington, London and Sydney, she joined Unitec Institute of Technology in Auckland in 2000 as media manager before being appointed communications manager and deputy director of communications.

In July 2003 she was appointed director of institute relations at Unitec responsible for the strategic development of the university’s brand.

Ms Bailey took up her role as director of the Raukatauri Music Therapy Centre in February this year. Former director Yid-Ee Goh left RMTC to pursue his musical career.

RMTC provides music therapy for special needs children of school age and younger and is the country’s first dedicated music therapy centre. Currently it employs four music therapists who work both at the centre and in Outreach community programmes.

* Music therapy has been shown to be very effective in helping children with disabilities, children in special education, victims of child abuse or in situations of family violence, youth offenders and children in refugee families. Research commissioned by the RMTC indicated there was potentially huge demand for music therapy in these areas, as the following figures attest:
- In 2006, 90,000 children nationally, aged 0-14 years, had a disability
- As of August 2007, 17,000 children were receiving special education
- In 2006, there were 40,000 substantiated cases of child abuse and more than 18,000 cases of family violence
- In 2006, more than 12,000 children were cared for by Women’s Refuge
- In 2006, there were more than 30,000 apprehensions for youth offending in 14-16 year olds
- About 750 refugees enter New Zealand each year
- RMTC currently sees about 80 children a week, either at its centre or through its Outreach programme.


About the Raukatauri Music Therapy Centre
Music therapy helps build bridges of communication with physically and intellectually disabled children, assisting them to develop new skills and reducing their sense of isolation. Work at the Raukatauri Music Therapy Centre is based on the internationally-acclaimed Nordoff-Robbins approach emphasising improvisation and other creative techniques. For further information on the Raukatauri Music Therapy Centre please visit www.rmtc.org.nz

ENDS

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