State Arts Agency Creative Aging Field Guide

Great news! The National Endowment for the Arts and the National Center for Creative Aging are partnering to create a Field Guide. This Field Guide will include findings from the last three years of the ENGAGE Initiative, published online as a resource.

Some of the materials included in the Field Guide will be:

  • Teaching artist directories for artists who work with older adults
  • State based funding opportunities for creative aging
  • Webinars and videos that highlight creative aging work
  • Up to date asset maps on organizations with creative aging programming

We are thrilled about developing this Field Guide, as it will be a fabulous ever-green resource for state arts agencies, artists, health care providers, and anyone who wants to age creatively!


Learning Groups Underway

We are midway through our Learning Group calls for the ENGAGE Initiative’s third year, and the conversations have revealed some wonderful findings.

On the topic of developing partnerships and collaborations, our state arts agency identified how necessary it is to develop the scope of any program and to utilize cities as geographic focal points for getting the work done.

When connecting with the aging services field, state agency staff members discussed how important a cold call can actually be but expressed the challenges in moving beyond the meeting phase.

Our next call will be on teaching artist training in creative aging, and promises to be a great learning opportunity!

Finally, take a look at our new map co-developed with Beth Bienvenu at the NEA:

ENGAGE Initiative State Map.JPG


Connecting with the Aging Services Field

On February 29th, we will be holding a Learning Group call to discuss how arts agencies can connect with the aging services that are present in their states.

One of the most effective potential partnerships that we’ve seen manifest in art agencies working to build creative aging programs is through aging services such as Bureaus or Departments on Aging, elder care communities, and even local AARP chapters.

We’ll be asking our representatives what the core challenges and opportunities are, and the ways we can collectively take the next steps forward. This is the first in our series of Learning Group calls, so stay tuned for our findings!

And finally, a little dose of inspiration on this rainy Monday morning:

Welcome New York and New States!

We would like to officially welcome the New York State Council of the Arts as the most recent addition to the 2016 NCCA ENGAGE Initiative Community of Practice!

We are welcoming nine total new states:

  1. Arkansas
  2. Colorado
  3. Maryland
  4. Nevada
  5. Oregon
  6. Tennessee
  7. New York
  8. New Mexico
  9. Kentucky

Each of which brings a unique perspective and new energy into the program. Welcome all!

2013-2016 ENGAGE Initiative Map



ENGAGE Plans for the New Year

As 2015 draws to a close, NCCA is busy solidifying the ENGAGE Initiative plans for the New Year. They include:

  • Developing an online Field Guide that serves as a resource portal aggregating best practices for state use
  • Initiating a robust asset mapping of state and regional creative aging resources
  • Bringing in partner organizations (AARP, LeadingAge, the VA) to present on how states can work with aging populations
  • Working in learning groups to address the core issues facing the arts and aging field

We are currently finalizing our list of learning group topics, but they include: Creating Opportunities for Older Artist, Developing Partnerships and Collaborations in Creative Aging, Grantmaking for Creative Aging, Bringing Creative Aging to Rural Communities, Connecting with the Aging Services Field, Model Programs, and Teaching Artist Training in Creative Aging.

More updates will follow as the work begins during the New Year. Meanwhile, Happy Holidays to you all and have a joyous end of the year!



New State Participants to the ENGAGE Initiative!

We recently held our 2016 NCCA ENGAGE Initiative Orientation Call, and welcomed six new member states into the community of practice! 

They are:

  1. Arkansas
  2. Colorado
  3. Maryland
  4. Nevada
  5. Oregon
  6. Tennessee

During the call, we shared the 2015 Program Report, outlined this years planned activities, and heard from some of our member states.

Below is the updated map for the 2016 year.

2013-2016 ENGAGE Initiative Map.jpg


Stay tuned for more updates as the year rolls forward!

Year Three Announced!

Through generous support from Aroha Philanthropies, the National Center for Creative Aging is thrilled to announce the third year of the ENGAGE Initiative! This year will include:

  • participation in the 2016 NCCA Leadership and Exchange – learn from peers at a national convening!
  • engagement with a community of practice webinar series – be inspired by national models and aging service collaborators!
  • development of new partnership opportunities – discover new sources of funding and program collaboration!

Do you work for a state arts agency? Are you a leader in the arts or aging services field looking for partnerships? Contact esanderson@creativeaging to learn more.

“This has been an incredible opportunity to build knowledge, capacity, and direction to move forward.” – Year Two Participant

More details forthcoming!