Creative Forces: NEA Military Healing Arts Network is an initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) in partnership with the Department of Defense that serves the unique needs of military patients and veterans who have been diagnosed with traumatic brain injury and psychological health conditions, as well as their families and caregivers. In the spring of 2017, the NEA announced the expansion of the Creative Forces program to include Fort Carson in Colorado Springs. Now, in partnership with Colorado Creative Industries (CCI), the Cultural Office of the Pikes Peak Region is serving as the administrative lead for our community’s local Creative Forces initiative.
To formally launch our local effort, the Cultural Office and CCI hosted an amazing Creative Forces Community Summit on February 15 & 16, 2018 at the new Ent Center for the Arts, on the UCCS campus. The Summit “sold out” two weeks in advance, and was attended by almost 200 active duty military, veterans, military family members, artists, arts and military service organizations, creative arts therapists, healthcare providers, educators, and others from the community. Please watch the video below for a brief overview of the Summit.
Please follow these links for additional videos and content from the Summit:
Building on the priorities and recommendations from the Summit, the Cultural Office is working with community partners to orchestrate a new “demonstration project” that will help to sustain and grow the Creative Forces network, and build even stronger connections between the arts and military sectors here in the Pikes Peak region. The project is called Military Arts Connection, and its general premise is “to enable military healthcare providers to access meaningful arts-based therapies and cultural experiences for their clients without financial barriers, while generating new economic opportunities for the local artists who will be sharing their talents and offering positive interventions and creative experiences.”
Stay tuned for more details, and look for the www.MilitaryArtsConnection.org website to launch in April of 2019. For questions about the Military Arts Connection demonstration project, please email andy@CulturalOffice.org, or call 719-634-2204. For more information about arts & cultural events and activities in our community, please visit www.PeakRadar.com, the online cultural calendar for the Pikes Peak region.
More about Creative Forces:
Since 2011, this military healing arts partnership with the Department of Defense has supported creative arts therapies for service members with traumatic brain injury and associated psychological health issues at two military medical facilities in the Washington, DC, area—the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE) at Walter Reed Bethesda in Maryland, and the NICoE Intrepid Spirit-1 at Fort Belvoir in Virginia. Learn more.
Creative Forces places creative arts therapies at the core of patient-centered care at ten additional clinical sites. In addition, the expanded Creative Forces program supports efforts to increase access to therapeutic arts activities in local communities for military members, veterans, and their families, as well as invests in research on the impacts of these innovative treatment and engagement methods.
For more information about the local Creative Forces initiative in Colorado Springs, please contact andy@CulturalOffice.org, or call 719-634-2204.