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!