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A poem from a patient at the Child Study and Treatment Center, where the nonprofit Pongo uses poetry to help in therapy. This poem is among several that will be published in the anthology “The Real I Feel.” The publication, the second featuring CSTC patients, will be released in 2021.

From group counseling to one-on-one sessions with a psychologist or even a soccer game, therapy takes many forms.

Including poetry.

The Child Study and Treatment Center makes poetry a central part of its recreational therapy program that encourages patients — some as young as 6 years old — to express themselves in creative ways.

CSTC has teamed with Pongo, a Seattle-based nonprofit, since 1999 to help the facility’s patients work through their trauma and other troubles.

“All emotions are on the table,” said Ann Teplick, the Pongo project leader at CSTC since 2005. …


Child makes pizza, broccoli in a dish
Child makes pizza, broccoli in a dish

OLYMPIA — In the spring, hundreds of thousands of Washingtonians lost their job due to COVID-19. She was one of them. A single mom, she was home all summer with her three children, two of whom had been in school when the pandemic hit. They were struggling to make ends meet.

This family is one of thousands in Washington state who qualified for a U.S. Department of Agriculture food benefits program called Pandemic EBT or P-EBT. From June through September 2020, the Department of Social and Health Services distributed more than $147 million in food benefits to families who qualified for P-EBT, serving nearly 400,000 children. …


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OLYMPIA — As the coronavirus worsens hunger for college students across the United States, thousands more community and technical college students in Washington state will receive food benefits.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently approved Washington’s proposal to allow low-income students in a wider range of certificate, degree and industry-recognized programs to receive food assistance through the state’s Basic Food Employment and Training Program, or BFET, provided they meet all the other eligibility criteria. …

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