Greater Hartford Arts Council Awards $10,000 in Grants to Support Arts Programs for Local Veterans

November 04, 2015
  • The council’s 2015 “Arts and Wellness” grant program, funded by UnitedHealthcare, supports organizations that enrich the lives and well-being of veterans and their families through art

The Greater Hartford Arts Council has announced the recipients of its 2016 Arts + Wellness Grants. These grants, supported by UnitedHealthcare, were given to four local arts organizations to produce programs that use creativity to enrich lives and enhance the health and well-being of veterans and their families.

The recipients – Ballet Theater Company, Hospital for Special Care, the University of Saint Joseph’s Autorino Center for the Arts and Humanities, and the Veteran’s Art Foundation – were chosen by a panel of community volunteers and were honored today at the 100 Pearl Street Gallery in Hartford.

“The Arts Council is proud to award ‘Arts and Wellness’ grants to these four outstanding organizations that are doing so much to enrich the lives of veterans and their families,” said Cathy Malloy, CEO, Greater Hartford Arts Council. “These programs will help veterans cope with their experiences and connect with their communities through art. We thank UnitedHealthcare for its support of this important grant program and for its commitment to our nation’s veterans.”

2016 Arts + Wellness Grant Recipients

Ballet Theater Company’s Veteran's Project
Ballet Theater Company – led by Roman Baca, Marine, Iraq War veteran and artistic director of the company – will compose a ballet thematically derived from the military experience. Connecticut-area veterans will have input into music, costuming, staging and choreography for the culminating ballet in autumn 2016.

Hospital for Special Care’s Joy of Art!: The Art of Honor
Hospital for Special Care’s (HSC) The Joy of Art! (JOA) program operates on the basic premise that making art has healing properties. The Art of Honor will provide workshops for veterans and their families to explore their experiences through the arts, concluding in a community showcase of the artwork in fall 2016.

University of Saint Joseph Autorino Center for the Arts and Humanities’ The Odyssey
The University of Saint Joseph will bring the country’s only all-veteran dance company to Connecticut to perform Homer’s The Odyssey. In conjunction with the Department of Veteran Affairs and the Department of Mental Health & Addiction Services, the university will use this special presentation to bring together communities of veterans, their families and caregivers to create opportunities for connection, advocacy and care, and to begin a process of reducing stigma around depression, addiction and violence.

Veteran Arts Foundation’s Mask-making Workshops for Veterans
In 2016, the Veteran Arts Foundation will hold four mask-making workshops specifically designed for veterans and led by art therapist Rachel Sclare. The art of mask-making in therapy has shown to be an effective therapeutic tool for veterans who are having difficulty transitioning from combat to domestic life and can help individuals process and cope with a variety of invisible war-related injuries.

“We are grateful for the opportunity to support the Arts Council’s ‘Arts & Wellness’ grant initiative, which helps fund arts-related programs to help the physical, mental and emotional rehabilitation of the men and women who sacrificed their health in the service of our country,” said Elizabeth Winsor, CEO of UnitedHealthcare National Accounts. “This year’s grant recipients and their works will make a difference in the lives of veterans and their families.”

For more information on the Greater Hartford Arts Council’s Arts + Wellness grants, visit

About the Greater Hartford Arts Council
The Greater Hartford Arts Council is the central voice for the cultural sector in our region. We secure community resources and responsibly reinvest those dollars through a stringent grant-making process into a wide array of organizations and programs that keep our community strong. We promote the arts as a regional asset and connect citizens to the arts. To learn more about Arts Council programs and services, as well as our United Arts Campaign, visit or follow us @letsgoarts_org on Twitter.

About UnitedHealthcare
UnitedHealthcare is dedicated to helping people nationwide live healthier lives by simplifying the health care experience, meeting consumer health and wellness needs, and sustaining trusted relationships with care providers. The company offers the full spectrum of health benefit programs for individuals, employers, military service members, retirees and their families, and Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, and contracts directly with more than 850,000 physicians and care professionals, and 6,000 hospitals and other care facilities nationwide. UnitedHealthcare is one of the businesses of UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH), a diversified Fortune 50 health and well-being company. For more information, visit UnitedHealthcare at or follow @myUHC on Twitter.