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Making Arts Accessible: Spotlight on Arts in Health Care Grants

Accessible artThe State Arts Council seeks to ensure that all people in New Hampshire have access to the enrichment and joy art brings to community life and to personal fulfillment. We require all organizations receiving public funds to hold events in locations that are accessible to people with special needs and we encourage all organizations to reach out to people who have limited access to the arts. Two of our grant programs focus specifically on providing greater access to the arts for underserved populations -The Arts in Health Care Initiative & Cultural Facilities grants.

The Arts in Health Care (AIH) Initiative provides grants, partnerships, and services to support arts activities, presentations and artist residencies that occur in health care facilities, rehabilitation centers and in centers serving the needs of the elderly. The overall goal of this program is to utilize the arts to enhance the quality of life and promote an environment conducive to healing for patients, residents, and/or clients and presented by trained artists.

Examples of projects include:

Concord Hospital: Host site for Certified Music Practitioner training
In March 2012, the State Arts Council helped to support a new partnership between Concord Hospital Therapeutic Arts & Activities Program, Concord Community Music School, and the Music for Healing and Transition Program (MHTP) to host the training of Certified Music Practitioners (CMPs). Certified Music Practitioners use their musicianship to create a healing environment in the clinical setting. Educated in the physics of sound and its effects on the body and psyche, CMPs play live music at the bedside to offer comfort and palliation to people experiencing pain, anxiety, distress, inability to communicate and acute loss. Concord is now one of fifteen sites for the Music for Healing and Transition Program around the United States.

Wentworth Home: “Stories of Childhood”
Wentworth Home is a residential facility for seniors located in Dover. In 2011 Pontine Theatre, based in Portsmouth, received a grant to bring a theatre-based artists-in-residence program to the residents of Wentworth Home. The program drew on Pontine’s original stage adaptation of Thomas Bailey Aldrich’s 1869 novel, “The Story of a Bad Boy.” Pontine Theatre’s artistic directors led project participants through a series of workshops connecting the themes in Aldrich’s novel to the personal experiences of the seniors at the Wentworth Home. Friends and family of the residents, as well as members of the local community, attended the final presentation.

Accessible artCrotched Mountain: Adaptive Dance Program
Crotched Mountain serves individuals with disabilities and their families. Their residential school provides education for children ages 5-22 with physical, developmental and emotional disabilities. Their Specialty Rehabilitation Hospital treats brain injuries, complex medical conditions and provides post-surgical rehabilitation. Since 2003 Crotched Mountain has offered an Adaptive Dance Program that provides weekly classes and annual public performances for students in the Crotched Mountain School. The children in the program, most of whom have mobility and communication issues, come together to enjoy the common expression of dance. In 2012 the State Arts Council funded a project to continue and expand the Adaptive Dance Program.



Last updated: July 26, 2012

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