New York State Creative Aging Initiative

A scene from a Lifetime Arts Creative Aging training held in New York. Credit: Shawn Choi

Project Components & Partners

Created by a new partnership of the New York State Council on the Arts and the New York State Office for the Aging, the Creative Aging Initiative takes an innovative, evidence-based approach to healthy aging, underscoring New York’s leadership as the first age-friendly state in the nation.

Project Goals

  • Build the capacity of NYS’s area agencies on aging to develop, implement and sustain creative aging programming
  • Seed programs to demonstrate the efficacy of creative aging programming as a core service
  • Increase the capacity of NYS teaching artists to facilitate online creative aging programs through a teaching artist mentor program
  • Improve the quality of life and reduce social isolation for older New Yorkers through arts education

Project Administration, Training, & Mentoring

This initiative will be administered by Lifetime Arts who will train up to 25 staff members from seven area agencies on aging, plus 75 New York-based teaching artists, and provide implementation support and coaching for funded programming. Upon completion of this training, teaching artists will be eligible to apply to be placed as a paid mentee in an online creative aging program, learning from program instructors and receiving coaching from Lifetime Arts staff.

About the Programming

This programming will build on extensive research demonstrating the role of the arts in improving health outcomes for older adults. Lifetime Arts will match AAAs with programs from our catalogue that best reflect the artistic interests of the older adults in their communities. The programs in the catalogue cover all major arts disciplines, and have been especially designed for remote delivery by teaching artists qualified by Lifetime Arts.

A close-up image of an older adult smiling and dancing.

Ballroom/Social Dance: Saratoga County Office for the Aging

August 2, 2021

Stay social while apart and learn the basics of social dance from home! During this 6-week informative workshop, participants will learn the Mambo, West Coast… Read more

Drawing/Collage: Essex County Office for the Aging

July 20, 2021

What if you could document your life in pictures? What kind of stories would they tell? What would influence those stories? The workshop, “Mapping a… Read more

Closeup image of an orange and yellow flower.

Photography: Saratoga County Office for the Aging

June 29, 2021

“Photographing the Beauty Around Me” is a 6-week course designed to teach older adults to capture excellent, artful digital photographs of their environments and the… Read more

Closeup image of dewdrops on green grass.

Photography: Essex County Office for the Aging

June 29, 2021

“Photographing the Beauty Around Me” is a 6-week course designed to teach older adults to capture excellent, artful digital photographs of their environments and the… Read more

Two women stand at a microphone before a storytelling performance.

Memoir: Westchester County Department of Senior Programs and Services

May 10, 2021

Storytelling is how we communicate who we are and learn about our shared histories. Register for “Into the Wild: A Memoir Class by Lifetime Arts”… Read more

Training Dates & Details

AAA Staff Training, Feb. 16-18

This 6-hour training led AAA staff through the Lifetime Arts Creative Aging Foundations course. Together, we explored current research on arts and aging; inherent biases about aging; best practices in creative aging programming; adult learning; developing responsive programming that is inclusive, representative, and equitable; the importance of community partnerships; and how to plan, implement, and sustain successful in-person and remote programming.

Teaching Artist Training, Feb. 22-24

In addition to covering Lifetime Arts’ Creative Aging Foundations course material, this 6-hour training also examined and demonstrated andragogical approaches to the development of sequential, skill-building, socially supportive instruction. Teaching artists gained an understanding of best practices in both in-person and remote program delivery.

Made possible by

This initiative is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts, New York State Office for the Aging, and the Association of Aging in New York with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.