Our History

Arts & Healthcare, Inc.

Central Louisiana Arts & Healthcare, Inc. was begun in 2003 using the Arts Council of Central Louisiana as their fiscal agent.  Our first contract was with Rapides Regional Medical Center in the Fall of 2003.  In February, 2004, we contracted with CHRISTUS St. Frances Cabrini Hospital to provide services there as well.

Our mission is to provide innovative arts experiences in healthcare settings with the goal of using the arts to promote healing, provide respite for family members and provide stress relief for medical personnel.

In addition to these two major hospitals in our area, we have offered services to:  HealthSouth Rehabilitation Hospital, Dubois Hospital, Grace Home, Hope House, OSMS, Riverside Hospital, Hematology and Oncology Life Center, Rapides Cancer Center, Cabrini Cancer Center and Friendship House.

In 2005, our focus shifted to care for over 15,000 evacuees who had been left homeless by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita that hit the Gulf Coast.  We cross-trained oover 70 artists to work in the shelters and temporary housing facilities in Rapides and Avoyelles Parishes for approximately 6 months.  Our artists provided a constant in these shelters as we brought art, music, dance, yoga, and more into their environment on a daily basis.  For these efforts, we received many awards including the Society for the Arts in Healthcare International Healing Award; a Red Cross Runway Award and an award from the National Art Education Association for Best Work Outside the Profession.  Our program was also featured in a book titled Transforming The Healthcare Experience Through The Arts which highlighted 36 exemplary arts in medicine programs throughout the world.

In June, 2007, we filed for our own non-profit status, left the Arts Council and become an official 501(c)(3).

Our major programs focus on making hospital environments more warm and welcoming and using the arts as a tool to calm, relieve stress anxiety and boredom and reduce burn-out for medical professionals.

We provide rotating art exhibits in a galleries that features local artists.  We provide live music performances in lobbies, waiting areas and the cafeteriaa at healthcare facilities.  We have visual artists who visit our local Cancer Centers to facilitate art actovities.  We also visit Pediatric patients offering bedside arts and giving children Kindness Dolls to encourage them to be grateful and kind.

Our newest program is the formation of a Threshold Choir whose mission is to offer compassion and comfort at the bedsides of people who are at a threshold: some with living, some with dying.

If you are interested in having us bring our healing arts programs to your facility, please contact:  judy@artsandhealthcare.org.

Arts & Healthcare, Inc.....we heal your soul!