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Program Services  

Arts in Health
Arts for Underserved Populations:
Arts in Health Program

Arts in Health Program Coordinator: Emily Killinger  l  603-271-0790

Arts in health is a field dedicated to using the power of the arts to enhance health and well-being in diverse institutional and community contexts.
                                                            - National Organization for Arts in Health

The New Hampshire State Council on the Arts partners with health agencies, organizations, and artists to support effective and accessible arts experiences that serve New Hampshire’s most vulnerable populations: individuals and families whose lives are impacted by chronic disease, disability, behavioral health, substance misuse, aging and dementia, and incarceration. We continue to explore opportunities to expand our support of key public health priorities that affect the well-being of New Hampshire citizens, including trauma, racism, social isolation, and income instability. We do this work on behalf of all people in the Granite State, recognizing that when arts experiences are part of a comprehensive health strategy, people enjoy healthier, more fulfilling lives—and our communities thrive. 

Funding and Programs

Arts in Health Project Grant
Arts in Health  (AIH) project grants respond to the recognition that arts and culture facilitate the physical, cognitive, and social-emotional aspects of individual healing, and that when applied to public health, promote healthy environments and policies in communities by fostering empathy, awareness, and social cohesion through shared narrative and aesthetic experiences. The AIH grant awards up to $8,000 for selected projects occurring August 1, 2024 – September 30, 2025.  For the FY2025 grant cycle, the 1:1 match requirement is waived.  The deadline to apply is May 3, 2024.

The Arts in Health grant category offers two Tracks for funding: 
The Health & Healing Track supports non-clinical arts engagement that promotes and facilitates individual health and healing through participatory arts programs or artist residencies.

The Public Health Track supports arts activities that provide a public health benefit in New Hampshire communities. This Track is interested insupporting projects that address one or more of the following public health priorities:

  • Collective/Intergenerational Trauma
  • Racism and Equity
  • Behavioral Health and Substance Misuse
  • Social Exclusion and Isolation
  • Chronic Disease
  • Housing and Neighborhood Disparities
  • Income Instability
  • Homelessness
  • Climate Impact in Public Health

Arts in Health Artist Roster
The Arts Council manages a searchable directory of New Hampshire professional artists who are trained to provide arts experiences to residents and clients of hospitals, hospice programs, nursing homes, substance use rehabilitation centers, and/or correctional facilities. Artists in this directory are juried by a panel of peers, who evaluate each applicant’s expertise as an artist working in health care settings.

Professional artists are individual contractors.  We encourage health-based providers and other organizations to approach hiring an artist as they would any other contracted position.  Contact the artist directly to discuss programs, availability, expertise, and references.  Fees should be negotiated with the artist.  Artists may also state their customary fees in their roster listing.

A New England-wide database of artists, creative organizations, and other participants in the region’s creative economy. This free, crowd-sourced resource enables people and businesses working with and within the creative economy to identify, connect with, and share opportunities within the arts. For arts commissions and other arts service entities, CreativeGround acts as a creative asset map to help you identify and showcase the creative businesses in your community. A program of the New England Foundation for the Arts.

NH Arts in Health Network Listserv (NHAHN)
N.H. State Council on the Arts hosts a statewide Arts in Health Network to connect, convene, and inform Arts in Health artist practitioners, healthcare professionals and administrators, and other partners in this field. The listserv participation is free and open to anyone working at the intersection of arts and health. To join the NH Arts in Health Listserv (NHAHN Notices), please click here and complete the subscription form.

Professional Development
The Arts Council hosts periodic conferences and trainings to inform and support professional growth in the arts in health field.  Past conferences include:

WOVEN: Gathering at the Intersections Fall – NHSCA’s 2023 Arts Partnership Conference. This two-day conference sought to explore and demonstrate that there are many paths to creativity. Art is never just one thing; its power is in the multiplicity of connections, experiences, and outcomes.

Embodied Healing: An Arts-Integrated Approach to Repairing and Restoring Ourselves
Fall 2021 and Spring 2022. A series of unique experiential events held in various locations across New Hampshire, offered in collaboration with our Arts Education program. Artist-designed and led, each event invited small gatherings of New Hampshire educators, healthcare professionals, and artists come together to connect, reflect, and heal.

Culturally Responsive Leadership: Race, Equity, and the Arts in Education and Community
Fall 2019. An integrated Arts Education and Arts in Health conference exploring how race, socio-economic status, trauma, and mental health uniquely inform the ways in which students learn and engage with community.

New Hampshire ARTS IN HEALTH Convening: Sharing Our Ideas and Programs
June 15, 2018, Concord Hospital

Introduction to TimeSlips
May 18, 2017, Currier Museum of Art, Manchester

Creative Aging Workshops for NH Teaching Artists
September 16, 2015, West Lebanon
September 17, 2015, Concord

2013 Arts in Healthcare Partnership Conference
A two-day conference presented by Concord Hospital and the NH State Council on the Arts to advance the use of the arts in New Hampshire healthcare settings.

Partnerships and Collaborations

The Arts Council works collaboratively with agencies, organizations and initiatives to support statewide health priorities.  It is our goal to inform opportunities for the arts to facilitate healing and promote awareness of public health priorities, to further effective practices and policies and build healthy communities for all N.H. citizens.

Examples of partnerships and participation include:
Children’s System of Care, Magnify Voices
Endowment for Health, Race & Equity in NH
Granite United Way, Committee on Substance Misuse
City of Nashua Division of Public Health & Community Services, 2019 Annual Meeting Working Together at the Roots: Building a Trauma-Informed Community
National Organization of Arts in Health, New England Arts in Health Network
New Hampshire Alliance for Health Aging

Research, Resources, and Best Practices

The New Hampshire State Council on the Arts maintains a curated Arts in Health Resource List


Last updated: February 2, 2024

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