AHCT is a fantastic organization that serves the Tulsa community and beyond in all aspects of the arts. It connects a huge number of people - from artists themselves to patrons to arts enthusiasts - to their own creativity and the creative works of others. Their recent construction of the Hardesty Arts Center has solidified Tulsa and the Brady Arts District as a destination. A remarkable set of programs, staff, volunteers and exhibits make AHCT an invaluable part of Tulsa.
Review from Guidestar
I have been a member of the Board of Directors for the Arts and Humanities Council of Tulsa (AHCT) for over ten years. There is no other non-profit that I have dedicated this length and extend of my volunteer time and effort. With our city and state facing budget shortfalls, art education is one of the first programs to be eliminated from our schools. As a result, students are not performing at their optimum levels and natural talents are left undeveloped. A central focus of the AHCT is providing art education with our Artists-in-the-Schools program. Our program reaches over 100,000 students annually, seeking to eliminate geographic, economic, and social barriers and ensure that all students have equal opportunity to engage in the arts. The AHCT is the largest community provider of the arts programming in Tulsa area public schools; no other arts organization offers educational and outreach programs on the same scale.
The Arts and Humanities Council of Tulsa is the heartbeat of the community in NE Oklahoma. In addition to acting as a hub for arts and culture collaboration, the organization provides critical early childhood and K-12 exposure to the arts that is so limited in our current public education system. This organization has a rich history in its role as ambassador and envoy, and will only be strengthened going forward by the addition of financial and managerial skills, as well as the advent of a new and spectacular venue for its programs.
The Arts in Schools program is very cutting edge. Several teachers have participated in this program to help bring new and more creative ideas to the class room to help children become more engaged not only in Math and Science but how math and science and the arts are truly related.
AHCT does amazing work in Tulsa. They are an integral part in making the arts accessible to our community. We are lucky that they have such a committed staff who works had to make our city better.
I have been to the classrooms and seen how the artists funded by AHCT have helped teach children to engage creatively with their environment. Children need more than just math and science. Among many, many other important things, AHCT brings professional visual and performing artists into public schools, providing opportunities children otherwise would not have. They have arranged projects that help wards of the state and troubled youth realize their creative potential, and begin to understand that they don't have to be a destructive force or take on the negative characteristics often attributed to them by parents and teachers.
The Arts and Humanities Council of Tulsa goes above and beyond expectations when it comes to seeking input from local artists. Mr. Busby has organized many art gatherings of artists and those interested in the arts seeking information on what is needed locally for the Tulsa arts community to flourish. The Council is very proactive in providing exhibition space for artists, promoting theater productions and designing a climate friendly for musical productions. The Council is known for its approachability. I have personally attended many informational sessions and have felt that my comments and ideas were given respectful consideration.
I am currently the chairman of the board of Arts and Humanities and have the opportunity to participate in many of the programs. I helped at Art of Bar B Que this past year and had a great time at this fund raiser. We were able to let a lot of people know about our organization at that. Currently I am involved with the planning of a new Visual Arts Center that will be a way to expand our Arts in the Schools programming. Phoenix Rising is a particular favorite since it reaches kids that have not made it in any other school environment. These kids get such a confidence boost from creating their own art that it helps them acheive academically as well.
The Arts and Humanities Council of Tulsa offers Harwelden for any public school in the Tulsa area. Teachers attend a summer institute and have artists come to their school two to three times a year. The performances are always outstanding and really impact the children. Most of the children served are economically disadvantaged and might not ever have opportunity to view dances, plays, and musical performances. Every person our school has had contact with has been great and they all have a true love and passion for children and what they do!
Their ability to reach a large number of children in schools is amazing. They make a difference in their lives and give them opportunities that aren't possible otherwise. They also reach into the community to help other groups that might not have an experience opportunity that they provide. ie hospital, adjucated youth, etc.
Here is a vibrant and energized arts organization that reaches all corners of its service area! With leadership determined to touch every individual with a dynamic Arts experience and detail-orienated execution of programs, the Tulsa Arts and Humanities Council has a well-justified reputation for fun, electric, and super-charged events for the whole family. This is a group that is building its dream--literally! Plans for their new building [although that word does not do it justice] downtown in the Brady District promise a wonderful and inclusive experience. The Groundbreaking will be this Spring.
This is an organization that is FUN to support because their gratitude is so genuine and they love to include you in their force-field.
Many years ago, I taught art classes to elementary and middle school children through artist in residence programs through the Art and Humanities Council of Tulsa. I was fortunate enough to be exposed to the arts as a young person, I wanted to pass that on to the young in my city with the help of AHCT. It was a development experience for me and I hope I was able to touch the life of just one young person in a positive way. Free after school and summer art programs funded by AHCT for children who might not get the opportunity is such a blessing to our community.
Thanks to the support of the AHCT we are able to provide art programming and positive adult role models to a group of high risk youth. The impact of the programming on the youth is significant in that it not only gives them an opportunity to be creative, but also teaches them the importance of team work and effective communication. It is awe-inspiring to see these young people transform from kids who would not give an adult the time of day on the street to a young adult who is respectful not only of the environment, but also the adult leading the class. They learn that if they work together they can create things that they never dreamed. AHCT's support of the these art programs provides an opportunity for high risk kids to be proud of themselves, their projects and their peers.
I have witnessed the activity of the Tulsa's Arts and Humanities Council throughout our city. It shows up in the strangest places! It supports an Arts and Healing project within Hillcrest Hospital where patients recover from major surgery, families wait for their loved one to have surgery and where women on a high risk pregnancy unit get a break from the endless days of worry and boredom. It puts art back into our schools and gives students a chance to shine while being taught by experts in art, dance, acting and music fields. It also provides steady work for our local artists which keeps them working and honing their skills rather than having to get a 9-5 job out of their field.