Happy New Year! There are so many things I find exciting about the beginning of a new year. It’s a time when I am fresh from taking a break and rejuvenated after seeing family and loved ones. I concentrate on eating cleanly…at least for a couple of weeks in an attempt to somewhat make-up for overindulgent holiday eating. And it’s a time of year when spring cleaning starts to hit me. Not the “cleaning” part so much as the throwing out of the old and integrating the new as I re-organize drawers, toys, clothes, and closet space.
But January has also turned into a time of year when I get jazzed about the upcoming state legislative session. And what better way to kick it off than our annual social media advocacy month!
About Social Media Advocacy Month
Advocacy —> Recognition —> Access
Since 2005, the American Music Therapy Association and the Certification Board for Music Therapists have collaborated on a State Recognition Operational Plan. The primary purpose of this plan is to get music therapy and our MT-BC credential recognized by individual states so that citizens can more easily access our services. The AMTA Government Relations staff and CBMT Regulatory Affairs staff provide guidance and technical support to state task forces throughout the country as they work towards state recognition. To date, their work has resulted in over 35 active state task forces, 2 licensure bills passed in 2011, 1 licensure bill passed in 2012, and an estimated 7 bills being filed in 2013 that seek to create either title protection or a licensure for music therapy. This month, our focus is on YOU and on getting you excited about advocacy.
CONNECTing with Our Stories
For the third year in a row, January is a time when the music therapy blogging community spreads advocacy through the social media ethers. This month, our theme is CONNECT. Connecting with each other, connecting with our clients, connecting with our colleagues, connecting with our advocates…and this year, we are focused on connecting through our stories.
You see, one of our most powerful advocacy tools are stories. Stories allow us to share information, events, and feelings in a way that brings together our common humanity. With that in mind, we will be collecting your stories about music therapy throughout the month. But more on that next week…
For now, I invite you to check in periodically on our 2013 social media advocacy month promotions page, which I will be updating with links to all the articles and podcast episodes published by the music therapy blogging community. And are you on Twitter? Then be sure to follow the #mtadvocacy and #lovemusictherapy hashtags to stay up-to-date on the latest!