CORNING, NY — The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Chairman Jane Chu announced today that The Rockwell Museum is one of only 163 nonprofit organizations nationwide to receive an NEA Challenge America grant. The Rockwell Museum is recommended for a $10,000 grant to support the continuation of the Garden of Fire summer youth program.
The Garden of Fire program was conceived collaboratively by local agencies with The Rockwell Museum serving as the lead organization. Serving youth in Steuben County, the program focuses on building capacity, depth and the integration of art and science. The goal of the program is to educate children about nutrition, health, art, music and natural science through interactive experiences. The Garden of Fire title represents the gardening and fire ceramics activities that are offered as part of the program. During the summer of 2014, The Rockwell Museum, The Arts Council of the Southern Finger Lakes, 171 Cedar Arts Center, Tanglewood Nature Center and CareFirst (formerly Southern Tier Hospice) offered programming to students served by the Corning Salvation Army, Addison Youth Center, Hornell Area Concern for Youth, and the Corning Area Youth Center.
NEA Chairman Jane Chu said, “I’m pleased to be able to share the news of our support through Challenge America including the award to The Rockwell Museum. The arts foster value, connection, creativity and innovation for the American people and these recommended grants demonstrate those attributes and affirm that the arts are part of our everyday lives.”
“Children participate in a series of art and science focused sessions led by local professional artists and educators. Each component of the program offers students unique opportunities which they would not otherwise be exposed to in their communities. It also allows students of varied backgrounds to work together to learn new skills and create art within a safe and supportive environment. We are delighted that this initiative will continue with support from NEA,” says Gigi Alvaré, Director of Education at The Rockwell Museum.
The Challenge America category supports projects that extend the reach of the arts to underserved populations whose opportunities to experience the arts are limited by geography, ethnicity, economics, or disability. The NEA received 347 eligible Challenge America applications and will award 163 grants for a total of $1.63 million.
For a complete listing of projects recommended for Challenge America support, please visit the NEA website at arts.gov. Follow the conversation about this and other NEA‐funded projects on Twitter at #NEAFall2014.
About The Rockwell Museum
The Rockwell Museum houses a collection of art about America, highlighting the people, land and ideas that shape the American experience. More than just a collection of art, The Rockwell is a staple of the Corning community, bringing arts into local schools, and onto our streets – serving youth that may not have other alternatives for arts education.
Our staff is at the forefront of the STEM to STEAM movement and has responded to the tough economic landscape our local schools face. Our educators visit the classroom when adversity prevents them from visiting The Rockwell to ensure that art enrichment remains a part of student learning. Additionally, we reach out to core community institutions that provide after school a summer programming, reaching mostly under-served students, through the creation of special programs and cutting–edge community collaborations. Finally, and at the core of our educational programming, we host some 13,000 students through our extensive school tour program and family programs each year.