Creative Aging TN

CreativeAgingTN LogoThe Tennessee Arts Commission, partnering with the Tennessee Commission on Aging and Disability and the Tennessee Department of Health, launched a new initiative in 2017 called Creative Aging TN.

“The number of Tennessee seniors age 65 and over is expected to almost double from 850,000 in 2010 to 1.7 million in 2030,” according to an April 2017 Comptroller’s report on senior long-term care. Driven by the Baby Boom generation size and increasing lifespans, “this population change will result in significant growth in the demand for and potential cost of current services and programs.”

Creative Aging TN offered regional workshops and a one-time seed funding for innovative projects through the arts that promote healthy aging of seniors and encourage community partnerships that have the potential for sustainability was offered. Over $75,000 was invested to help promote the following outcomes in older adults throughout the state: health and wellness; lifelong learning and engagement; increased positive attitudes/perceptions about aging; and connecting older adults to their communities.

Creative Aging TN is currently in the process of launching the TN Person-Centered Music Program, which offers Tennessee nursing home residents personalized music as part of their care.

 FY18 Funded Awards include:

After Deployment – $5,000
After Deployment located in Clarksville will offer art classes for underserved seniors to learn woodworking, painting, arts journaling, and to provide activities that will improve health and wellness and promote positive attitudes about aging.

Arts Cultural Enrichment Council of Hawkins County – $4,030
Arts Cultural Enrichment Council of Hawkins County will videotape the life stories of seniors in their community and publish a book about the life lessons of these seniors. As part of the project, seniors will tell their stories through performance, writing, or visual arts and near the end of the project, the seniors will reach out to youth in the schools to share their stories.

Clay County Senior Citizens Center – $1,000
Clay County Senior Citizens Center will offer seniors classes in the visual arts, wood crafting, and local dance forms like buck, square, and line dancing to increase physical activity and promote connectivity to community for all seniors throughout the county.

Crockett County Office on Aging & Senior Center – $1,000
Crockett County Office on Aging & Senior Center will offer a wide-variety of art classes in visual arts, jewelry making, music, and theater to seniors in order to increase cognitive thinking, promote physical motion and to connect/communicate with others in the community.

CWEET (Clean Water Expected in East TN) – $5,000
CWEET (Clean Water Expected in East TN) will engage seniors in a 6-week group art class involving painting, sculpture, collage, drawing, woodworking, and embroidery to create original artworks illustrating their relationship to the long-polluted Pigeon River.  At the end of the project, the art made will be exhibited along with a video documentary of their stories.

Etowah Area Senior Citizens – $3,000
Etowah Area Senior Citizens located in a low-income and disabled housing complex in McMinn County, will offer six (6) new art opportunities in ceramics, line dancing, music (singing & instrument playing), jewelry-making, painting and flower-designing.  Outcomes and health-related benefits for this project include increased physical fitness, socialization, and self-esteem.

Folks at Home – $4,327
Folks at Home, based in Franklin County will provide seniors the opportunity to participate in learning quilting at the Sewanee Community Center and Senior Center by working with a skilled local professional artist/quilter and will be in conjunction with their Boost Your Brain and Memory program.   The project will also include the rural counties of Marion and Grundy and outcomes will include increasing lifelong learning and health & wellness.

Granville Museum – $5,000
Granville Museum will work with seniors in a variety of activities like storytelling, quilting, and videography to preserve the history and arts culture of Historic Granville, a small rural community on Cordell Hull Lake in Jackson County, which was once a vibrant farming community prior to the flooding of the Cumberland River.  ­Outcomes for this project include increasing connectivity to the community and lifelong learning.

Grinder’s Switch – $5,000
Grinder’s Switch located in Hickman County will provide a series of art classes to engage their most underserved seniors including mentally disabled adults in hands-on craft classes, quilting workshops and storytelling.  Storytelling will also be a cross-generational activity because it will connect seniors with fifth-grade classes in the community and the art workshops will take place across the county in a senior center, two nursing homes, and the two branches of the Hickman County Public Library.  Outcomes include increased lifelong learning and connecting older adults to their community.

Henderson County Senior Center – $3,100
Henderson County Senior Center, located in the City of Lexington, will create a theatrical production involving seniors who will attend workshops to learn how to write, produce, direct, and perform in a live theatrical event that will be held at the end of the program.  Outcomes include lifelong learning and connectivity to community.

Lantern Lane Farm – $5,000
Lantern Lane Farm located in Wilson County will use the visual arts as part of its equine and therapy program for seniors suffering from a variety of mental illness and related disorders.  Using the arts will help these seniors express emotions and narratives that promote positive therapeutic goals and healing.

Lawrence County Senior Citizens Club – $1,856
Lawrence County Senior Citizens Club in Lawrence County will offer writing classes to seniors and will teach basic computer/internet skills as well as how to establish a blog.   The program’s outcomes will increase lifelong learning and engagement and help connect seniors to their community.

Lauderdale County Commission on Aging – $3,000
Lauderdale County Commission on Aging will engage seniors in pottery, acrylics, and floral arranging classes during the year.  At the completion of the program, art projects made by seniors will be exhibited on display at various locations around the county and the program hopes to stimulate their creative minds of seniors.

McMinn County Senior Citizens, Inc. – $5,000
McMinn County Senior Citizens will offer art classes in jewelry making, floral arranging, wreath making, and candle making for seniors in McMinn and other surrounding rural counties. Outcomes for this project include improving cognitive and motor skills and aiding those with low vision.

Metropolitan Inter-Faith Association – $5,000
The Metropolitan Inter-Faith Association in partnership with Creative Aging Memphis in Shelby County will provide musical performances in senior centers and subsidized senior housing residences that serve Metropolitan’s congregate meal sites. By partnering together, this project will help to connect older adults to their surrounding community and reduce isolation.

Senior Citizens Home Assistance Services/Renaissance Terrace – $5,000
Senior Citizens Home Assistance Services/Renaissance Terrace located in Knox County will develop a training and internship program for seniors interested in acquiring skills as curators, docents, gallery managers, and art program developers. The seniors will then work with artists in studios and galleries; community art groups to develop art events; develop an annual art show for older adults in East TN; and curate exhibits for assisted living and other medical facilities.

Southeast Tennessee Development District – $5,000
The Southeast Tennessee Development District in conjunction with the Chattanooga Symphony & Opera’s string and wind quintets will offer a classical music series to senior centers and seniors throughout Southeast Tennessee.  The organization is located in Hamilton County, but the program will also reach into surrounding rural counties.

Town of Jonesborough – $4,400
The Town of Jonesborough in Washington County will contract with a senior artist who will coordinate music, dance, theater, and storytelling opportunities for seniors to participate in two musical productions. Outcomes for this project include increasing lifelong learning and engagement and connecting adults to their communities and will serve the more rural communities of the county.

Tullahoma Art Center – $5,000
The Tullahoma Art Center located in Coffee County will work with seniors to create a sculpture in a public space in the City of Tullahoma using recycled materials or trash. Seniors would be involved in the project by helping to design, collect materials, and construct the sculpture alongside youth in the community.  Outcomes for this project include promoting social engagement, physical activity, and problem-solving skills.

The Tennessee Arts Commission encourages applications for funding through the various grant opportunities the Commission offers each year for creative aging projects. Grant opportunities include arts access, arts education, arts build communities, arts project, and rural arts project.