Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center's Bemis School of Art
won a major award for their collaboration on "Military Artistic Healing
," a 15-week multimedia art therapy class for soldiers suffering from PTSD and traumatic brain injury.
The Impact Award
"highlights [the] innovative use of the arts to propel business success, programs that engage employees with creativity and other community activities that support arts and business partnerships," and is given by the Colorado Business Committee for the Arts
. CBCA held its annual Business for the Arts Awards
yesterday in Denver.
Military Artistic Healing started in 2009, and can even provide college credit through UCCS. The current class runs through May 6, and the art created by the soldiers is put on display at the U.S. Air Force Academy Hospital
. On Bemis' website, the class is described this way:
Military Artistic Healing assists participants in increasing their personal management of life stressors through artistic and written self-expression. Creativity is often overlooked as a tool that promotes healing and trauma resolution and self-expression ignites self-motivated behavioral changes while simultaneously helping veterans and active military to gain the skills necessary for coping with stress and loss.
Per the FAC's press release on the award, soldiers who have participated have found the class to be transformative, allowing them to express themselves creatively and find more peace in their lives.
“It’s allowed me to start seeing the positives,” says Army Staff Sgt. Bobby Mathis, a member of Fort Carson’s Warrior Transition Unit.
“Military Artistic Healing Program has been an amazing journey for me and continues to do so” says current student Army Cpl. Eric Cruzat. “Kim, Tara, and the program as well as others involved have assisted me through art to continually fight my demons on a daily basis and give me hope for a better future.”
This is the first and only CBCA award that a Colorado Springs institution has snagged.