Karen Pence aims to raise awareness about art therapy

File Photo: Gov. Mike Pence and his wife, Karen, at the GOP Convention on Tuesday, July 19, 2016.

WASHINGTON (AP) - Karen Pence wants people to know that art therapy isn't exactly arts and crafts.

The wife of Vice President Mike Pence has been a passionate advocate of art therapy for many years, including during her recent stint as first lady of Indiana. Now, she hopes to use her new and loftier public profile to raise awareness of the mental health profession and help change the public's perceptions about what art therapists actually do.

Mrs. Pence tells The Associated Press in an exclusive interview that art therapists help their patients have "a little more control."

An artist herself, she plans to observe some European art therapy programs when she accompanies her husband to Germany and Belgium on Friday.

It's the vice president's first overseas trip since taking office last month.

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