by Morgan Yeatts Here at the Academy Center of the Arts’, our mission is to serve the community through arts and culture, and outreach is a crucial aspect of that mission. When a chance for the ACOA to partner with the Bridges Residential Treatment Center arose, it was yet another perfect opportunity to put this mission into practice. Bridges Residential Treatment Center is a program by Centra which houses children ages 6 through 17 who suffer from chronic mental health problems. The program is dedicated to providing a therapeutic, nurturing environment in which these children can feel safe and be encouraged to thrive. While the Bridges program provides excellent opportunities and resources, many of the children in the program don’t have access to traditional art classes or arts education on a regular basis. For Kelly Posenauer, Director of Education at the Academy, the route we chose to take the program was obvious. “Art,” she says, “is basically an avenue for healing…and a way to create open communication”. She says that, because of the children’s mental health problems, “in a traditional classroom setting, [they] often act out and don’t get the attention they need, so they don’t get […]
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