Joyful Arts Studio provides art therapy at Menno Haven

Staff Writer
Echo Pilot

Joyful Arts Studio, Inc., Greencastle, was awarded a grant from the Pennsylvania Partners in the Arts to provide a proven drawing course for residents with cognitive impairment. Susan Shaffer, the executive director at Joyful Arts, has partnered with Menno Haven to provide the art therapy course at their Menno Village and Penn Hall campuses.

Joyful Arts is a non-profit corporation committed to sharing the joy of art and the creative process. It opened its doors March 9, 2012 at 55 W. Baltimore Street, Greencastle.

The proven art therapy program Shaffer will be sharing at the Menno Haven campus is Simple Lines, from research developed by Barbara Warfel. The lessons are intended to enhance cognitive abilities and provide the residents with meaningful art activities.  

“Menno Haven encourages life long learning.  We are very thankful and excited to be able to participate in the Simple Lines program that will give our residents a joyful activity that will stimulate cognitive functioning,” said Katie Ackerman, director of Life Enrichment at Menno Haven Retirement Communities.

 Menno Haven is a continuing care retirement community dedicated to the care of the elderly in a Christian spirit in south central Pennsylvania.  Menno Haven’s mission is to enhance the quality of life through responsive Christian Human Services in a caring community.

The goals of Simple Lines drawing lessons are: to increase participants’ quality of life and social interaction through art activities; to improve the participants’ cognitive skills, concentration and fine motor skills; to build confidence and self-esteem in participants; to share the joy of art with others; and to increase community awareness about the positive results in improved cognitive thinking through the creative process.

The art lessons will culminate with an art reception at the Menno Haven campus displaying art created by the residents.  A date and time has yet to be established.