Night of Champions: Laura’s Story

Here at Magee, we are dedicated to treating the whole person — not just the injury. We are so proud to be able to offer a wide range of patient and community programs that do just that. But these programs wouldn’t exist without your support. Each year, the Night of Champions raises much-needed funds to keep them going strong. 

We can tell you over and over again how important these programs are to people living with disabilities.  We can show you studies and statistics. Facts and figures. But don’t just take it from us. We asked patients and former patients to tell us, in their own words, how these programs have impacted their lives. Today’s blog post comes from Laura Torchin, a participant in our Art Therapy Program.


I’m Laura.

I came to Magee in 2010 after a fall left me with a traumatic brain injury and broken back.


Laura (right) with Magee art therapist Lori Tiberi

Laura (right) with Magee art therapist Lori Tiberi

An injury like that can be isolating. Art therapy helped me get out of the house for something other than a doctor’s appointment. It gave me something to look forward to, helped me to socialize with others who have had similar injuries, and helped mend my spirit.  People seemed to like the art I made, and it gave me a sense of pride and accomplishment, something I lost while healing from my injuries.  

Art therapy gave me an outlet for the mixed bag of emotions that go with being hurt and recovering, as well as the physical pain and difficulties. You can put your feelings down on canvas without having to explain why or how you are feeling. 

I look at life and art much differently now.  I appreciate the energy and effort that goes into art, imagine the life of the artist and their backstory, whether it is a fellow patient at Magee or a famous artist. I have continued to do art on my own at home, painting and drawing, which I never did prior to my injuries.

Therapy is known to be an important part of recovery and art therapy, specifically, can help as no other therapy can.  It provides emotional, physical and mental benefits while giving patients something that seems less like another dreaded appointment, but something to look forward to. 

It is not covered by insurance, yet is so beneficial and integral in the recovery process.  Having such a major traumatic change in my life, art therapy helped me heal like no other therapy could.


To learn how to support Laura and others like her, click here. We hope to see you at the Night of Champions on May 2!


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