‘Arts for All’ provides art programs at no cost for N.D. children and adults

Good Day Dakota

Arts for All program was started in 2018, giving the Bismarck/Mandan community a reason to keep pursuing arts. It originally started for low income, at-risk, or kids with developmental issues, but now has grown into a much bigger program.

For quite a while now, school arts programs nationwide have seen a decline in fundings. However, the Arts for All program is giving every child and adult in our area a chance to strive in whatever area of the arts they’d like to.

Arts for All is a non-profit organization, bringing art, dance, drama, and music to more than 350 kids and adults in the region– at no cost at all.

Executive Director of Arts for All Sargianna Wutzke says, “Once you hit middle school and go into high school– all the different types of arts come at a cost. Whether that be if you are in band and you play an instrument– there’s a cost for that. Or if you’re in theater and you need some type of fee for being in a musical.”

The program currently partners with four title-one schools and other organizations in the area to provide as many opportunities as they can to everyone from all walks of life.

Wutzke says, “And you can see right away how excited those kids are. And a lot of the classes we have for dance are more where we have quite a few instructors and smaller class sizes because it’s kids with developmental disabilities who need a little more assistance or have autism and need that special one on one with a teacher.”

The Charles Hall Youth Group Home is one of the places Arts for All has been able to serve– and says the program has impacted their kids more than they ever thought.

Director of Marketing and Communications at Charles Hall Youth and Family Services Rhonda Styles-Rohde says, “The very first art class Arts for All had was here at this case home. The boys were really struggling at that time and not even being able to sit down at the table together and do something that was productive. And our artist Melissa Gordon came in and sat down with those boys from 45 min to an hour and they sketched and interacted and it was an amazing thing to see cuz I was a little nervous about it.”

Rhonda says it’s completely changed her kid’s personalities and has given them something to look forward to every week.

“Be able to share their work and feel like they are accomplishing. but in a positive way expressing themselves because that’s a lot of the times where our kids struggle. They have so many emotions they don’t know how to express it. And this is definitely showing them a better way or more positive way to express it,” says Styles-Rhode.

They are always in need of donations to purchase art supplies and other necessities– but that isn’t their biggest concern right now.

“We are also in need of volunteers– actually are biggest need is volunteers. We are looking at expanding music and we have gotten a grant for that and unfortunately, the few musicians that were on board were not able to commit anymore, so we are looking for someone in particular to teach guitar,” Wutzke adds.

For more information on how to help, click here.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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