Event focuses on arts-based health and wellness efforts

The Southeastern CT Cultural Coalition will present “Arts & Health InterSECT: Creating Health & Wellness Through the Arts in Southeastern CT” 9-11:30 p.m. Feb. 2 at the Mashantucket Pequot Museum & Research Center.

The event, which is the first of its kind in the region, is free to attend. Registration is required, though, at www.CultureSECT.org.

Coalition Executive Director Wendy Bury said, “The arts have a powerful impact on health and wellness ... This event serves to inform, catalyze and inspire. It is the first public step to connect the dots of professionals and organizations currently providing arts-based health and wellness programs, and provides an opportunity for those who would like to learn more or potentially collaborate with others.”

Guest speakers include State Senator Heather Somers, co-Chair of the Public Health Committee, and Bill Stanley of Lawrence & Memorial Hospital.

Judy Dworin, who is founder, executive and artistic director of Judy Dworin Performance Project, Inc., will provide the keynote about her organization and innovative arts projects with prison communities, including at York Correctional Institute in Niantic.

Arts & Health InterSECT is co-hosted by Artreach, Inc. (Norwich), Child & Family Agency of Southeastern Connecticut (New London), Inc., Horses Healing Humans (Stonington), Reliance Health, Inc. (Norwich), The Light House (Groton), and Writer’s Block Ink (New London), some of the active participants of the coalition’s Arts in Health monthly peer Roundtable. The group began as a Rising Tide Series Cultural Conversation to identify common issues when the coalition was first formed in 2014. Roundtable attendees attend meetings to share information, learn about resources, and find areas for collaboration.

Several of the co-hosts will share their collaborative projects, and all will have information tables during this Arts in Health Cultural Summit. Attendees will find out about programs available for local referrals, discover new forms of arts-based programs for health and wellness, and connect with others interested in strengthening the region’s arts in healthcare efforts through advocacy and collaboration.

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