Community Arts Programs

At the Heart of It

What began as the simple desire to fill an unmet community need has grown into a year-round commitment to bring weekly arts programming directly to under-served marginalized community members who otherwise may not have opportunities for creative self-expression.

Community Arts Programs

Participants of all abilities discover talents and express themselves while also interacting with local artists, college students, and the community at large. We create positive experiences for our groups through interactive arts such as creative theatre, expressive movement, visual art, dance, poetry, and life stories.

In addition, our public art exhibits, community events, and celebrated theatre/dance productions break through social barriers and raise community awareness about the gifts and talents of individuals within our diverse community.

Community Arts Programs (CAP)

Our Community Arts Programs offer interactive arts, such as creative theatre and movement, visual art, music, poetry, and life stories. These programs are provided to at-risk youth, people with disabilities, and seniors at local non-profits free of charge.  Our Community Arts Programs include the following:

Senior Expressive Arts (SEA)

Teaching Artist Program (TAP)

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"Life Stories" awakens memories through nostalgia and memorabilia to reveal the true treasures of an individual’s life experiences. Seniors come together in a communal atmosphere to remember and share their fascinating and unique personal life stories.

Professional artists deliver empowering visual & performing arts experiences to our program partner participants, as well as train and mentor our interns. 

Creative Internship Program (CIP)

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Music Alive Program (MAP), 
Local talented musicians share the gift of music, performing across a variety of genres, providing interactive music experiences for the residents of low-income senior facilities.

Local college students are mentored and trained to effectively combine the arts with social service. CIP cultivates empathy & appreciation of diversity, while sharing life-affirming experiences in the arts.

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Expressive Art for Seniors,
Provides uplifting creative arts opportunities including visual art, poetry and photography.

Public Events Program (PEP)

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Providing enriching creative activities at 7+ annual public events, including our, “Create a Costume & Portraits for Youth” booth, where children and teens of all backgrounds express their creativity and interact with each other as they explore a plethora of costumes and props.

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“Inside the Outside”, our annual outsider art exhibit, presented at local venues, showcases the sensitive innovative artwork of artists with disabilities from our Community Arts Program.

“… wonderful talent, very
touching” … “amazing” …
“uncensored, magical” …
"marvelous" ... “right from the heart"
~ Viewers comments

“Arts for Humanity!’s Life Stories classes are a wonderful experience for our seniors, they share their life experiences, memories and stories, which creates a deeper understanding of each other and build community. Life Stories reduces isolation and depression, the seniors are heard and appreciated for who they are, what they have done, and what they are still able to do. We appreciate working with Arts for Humanity! to provide this meaningful program to our seniors at Villa Santa Fe and are grateful for this collaboration.”

– Program Director of Villa Santa, Clarissa Montenegro

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I’ve learned so much from working with Arts for Humanity!, Karsen taught ME to be a better teacher by mentoring me; she spread her love for what she does, enabling it to affect more people.
— Jackie Rotman, Founder, Everybody Dance Now!

This project is funded in part by the Organizational Development Grant Program using funds provided by the City of Santa Barbara in partnership with the Santa Barbara County Arts Commission.