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HeART Stories: Building Empathy Through the Arts

We are delighted to announce that The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage has awarded a large grant for a new collaboration between Thomas Jefferson University, ARTZ Philadelphia and Theater of Witness. This Pew Center-funded project, ‘HeART Stories: Building Empathy through the Arts’ will join artists, medical students, people living with dementia, and their care partners in a creative process of empathy-building, storytelling and relationship-forming that will culminate in an original theater performance work in September 2019.

Furthering Jefferson’s development of creative pedagogy at the intersection of art, healthcare and wellness, the program is guided by the principle that the arts provide a rich context for practicing habits of emotional intelligence that are essential to the successful practice of medicine.

As part of this project, Teya will lead listening and creative process circles of students who will engage in sharing their own stories through a variety creative methods. A select group will work with over an extended period of time to develop a full Theater of Witness production about what it means to become a healer that will premiere in September 2019.

We are thrilled to help Jefferson create the next generation of healers, people who listen through their hearts as well as their stethoscopes.