AWAKENINGS PROJECT

Rating: 4.92 stars   38 reviews

Issues: Arts & Culture, Mental Health, Health

Location: P.O. Box 177 Wheaton IL 60187 USA

Mission: The group's mission is to assist persons with mental health issues in developing their craft and finding an outlet for their creative abilities through art in all forms. The Awakenings Project also works in another direction: to seek to raise public acceptance and awareness of the creative talents of people living with psychiatric disorders who work in the fields of fine art, music, literature and drama. As writers and artists in recovery, for over a decade, we at Awakenings have basked in this activity, and feel sure the public will continue to better surmise the creative capacity and endowment of persons living with mental health issues. The Awakenings Project has succeeded. Awakenings has been a grass-roots initiative. It shows that mental health consumers can become producers of extraordinary art exhibits, can publish an internationally acclaimed literary arts journal, can support music and theatrical events. Our work has not gone unnoticed. In 2006 we were winners of the "Outstanding Contribution to Recovery by a Non-Profit Organization" award by the Irwin Foundation at Celebration Recovery.
Results: We've been in existence since 1996, but only became a 501(c)3 in January 2004. All of us live with some diagnosis of a mental illness and we love to create art. We've produced literary arts journals for over 10 years, produced many, many gallery shows, where we have musicians at our opening receptions, we do art fairs, fundraisers, etc., etc.
Target demographics: people who like to create art, whether visual, music, literary or drama, who also live with some form of mental illness.
Direct beneficiaries per year: Our studio serves approximately 35 - 50 artists per year, and we print work from approximately 35 authors in our literary journal annually.
Geographic areas served: Chicago, Chicagoland, DuPage County, Kane County, Cook County, Will County, and sometimes all of Illinois
Programs: art groups, classes, exhibits, producing The Awakenings Review, poetry readings/slams, music and dramatic productions.
2011 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I have worked with The Awakening Project in the past and they obviously touch the souls of some very unique and talented artist.

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Rating: 4 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

We have followed the Awakenings Project through our son for eight years now. The project continues to grow, flourish, and offer opportunities for shows and sales to artists who might otherwise get lost in the shuffle. The artists offer paintings, drawings, sculptures, photographs, furniture, pottery --an amazing breadth of expression.

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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

3 people found this review helpful

When my adult son came to live with me I began a frantic search for something he could do as an artistic outlet. I was delighted to find The Awakenings Project just 45 minutes away and we began to take Peter to the studio and to their wonderful art shows. He began to sell some of his paintings and sculptures which was a wonderful affirmation of his artistic efforts. We have enjoyed developing friendships with the leaders, the clients, and other parents. We appreciate the encouragement and opportunities that The Awakenings Project provides for art, music, drama and writing endeavors.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

art shows in Chicago, Aurora, Oak Park, and other Chicago suburbs.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the opportunity for artists, musicians, and writers who live with mental illness to be able to display and perform in real and wonderful galleries.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

always cheerful and encouraging. The leaders have offered my son transportation and even overnight housing when necessary.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2008-8-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

I love what they are doing with art to help those with mental illness.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Unsure

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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Rating: 5 stars  

My name is Mary Ann and I suffer from a mental illness, schizophrenia, and I love art. I am a self-taught artist and although I knew I was not alone, I never knew that there were groups on line for people just like me. Even tho I live several states away, The Awakenings Project has had a big impact on my life. My confidence level has risen and I am inspired so much by the other members works. I hope to take a road trip some day and meet this great group of people.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Unsure

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Was this review helpful? 

Thank you so much Mary Ann for taking the time and investing the energy to write a review of Awakenings. You are so awesome! You've been an inspiration to me, to know that we can have an influence even from a distance. Keep creating and sharing. I know the whole Awakenings community loves your energy! Irene