Shireen Yaish

Shireen Yaish

Kaynouna Art Therapy Center


Shireen Yaish is founder of Kaynouna Arab Art Therapy Center. Shireen’s passion stems from her need to reach out to communities living in challenging places, such as Gaza, Palestine- to empower them to connect with their Kaynouna (their core of being), in-order to realize their full potential and flourish as they should. She has been able to reach thousands of refugee and unprivileged communities in the Arab world, andhas stationed herself as a pioneer of trauma informed art therapy in her part of the world. Shireen is the spirit behind initiatives such as ‘Selfie Kuna- Empowering Women Through Art’, ‘Davinci’s Children- Art Therapy with Orphans of Jordan’, and ‘Frida- Art Therapy with Refugee Children’- which provide therapy and training to thousands of Syrian, Iraqi, Palestinian, Jordanian, Sudanese, and Lebanese women and children. Self-empowerment, resilience and self-compassion are the motivation behind these initiatives. Shireen is also a well-known speaker, and has presented research papers in mental health conferences in London, Toronto, Amman and Hong Kong and has published research papers in journals and books concentrating on trauma informed art therapy. Her clinical skills are based on art psychotherapy and influenced by Psychodynamic approaches, Post Jungian explorations, Psychotherapy in Feminism schools, and Trauma Informed Art Therapy and Mindfulness techniques. Her work has been covered by CNN, Al Jazeera, BBC Arabic, TEDx and many other news outlets and talks. Shireen was trained and qualified at Goldsmiths College, University of London in Art Psychotherapy. She is a member of the British Association of Art Therapists (BAAT) and Canadian Art Therapy Association (CATA).



Kaynouna's Journey- Art Psychotherapy in the Arab World

Kaynouna introduced Art Therapy to the Arab world, and while many people doubted the use and effect of art psychotherapy, Shireen persevered to reach thousands of underprivileged and refugee communities in Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine and UAE. What is art psychotherapy? does it really work? and what stories do beneficiaries have to tell through their art?