Lawton, Okla._The Goodwill Adult Day Services Art Program of Goodwill Adult Day Services was recognized on March 12th, 2013 for the Best Practice of the Year Award at the 18th Annual Conference of LeadingAge Oklahoma.
The award is given to an organization for displaying an outstanding initiative in the provision of services for the aging. The award recognizes a practice that enhances resident satisfaction, demonstrates significantly improved access to services that enhance the quality of life for its residents, and one that is unique to the organization and would be worthy of replication in other organizations.
Goodwill Adult Day Services' objective for the Adult Day Services Art Program is to encourage participants to create and express themselves through group painting sessions while taking pride in their art. The staff believes that through their art, they will have an opportunity for creative self-expression, improve self-esteem, increase their life satisfaction and gain a sense of accomplishment through art. Led by a staff of artists, the program allows the participants to increase their knowledge and discover new skills through exposure to various artistic mediums.
Elizabeth Skulski, Director of Goodwill Adult Day Services, had a vision for participants to express themselves through different mediums of art, especially through oil painting. In October 2011, Goodwill Adult Day Services wrote and received an art grant in the amount of $1,000 from the Leslie Powell Art Gallery. Upon receiving the grant, the Adult Day Services employees designated an art classroom and began teaching the fundamentals of art. After working with the participants in a group setting, it was realized they preferred to collaborate together and produce art pieces. These larger canvases of art were extraordinary and well-received by visitors and the community.
In October 2012, Goodwill Adult Day Services had a small preview of the artwork at Cameron University. The response from the public was overwhelming and one of the paintings was sold for $290; the profits were put back into the art program. After viewing the paintings, the Leslie Powell Gallery presented a proposal to the Goodwill Adult Day Services to exhibit their art at the gallery in May 2013. Collaboration with the art gallery demonstrates how important expressive art is to all.