Muse 360 Brings Arts, Health and Wellness to Park Heights

August 13, 2014

Take a gardening project, add a healthy foods cookbook and a community mural, and you have the recipe for Muse 360 Arts “Health and Wellness Initiative” in the Park Heights community. Long known for its use of the arts to create opportunities that educate, build life skills, and empower Baltimore, Muse 360 focused on health and wellness education for this community project which was funded by monies they received from a 2013 BCF Neighborhood Grant Program.

Park Heights is located in a food desert with an abundance of fast food and corner stores that offer limited nutritious food options. This limitation contributes to obesity, diabetes and strokes. In partnership with Creative City Charter School in the Park Heights community, Muse 360 worked to educate residents on the benefits of creating healthy nutritional alternatives through gardening, and created a mural to bring the community together.

Muse 360 youth along with community residents cleaned up the neighborhood’s Hidden Corner Community Garden to prepare for planting vegetables and also used the garden as a site for teaching and developing the community mural. In addition, youth from Creative City completed artwork for the cookbook and selected recipes using foods that were planted in the community garden.

This initiative is a good illustration of how a youth-focused arts organization can partner with neighborhood residents, listen to their ideas, and use the arts to craft creative solutions to community problems.

Major funding for the Neighborhood Grants Program comes from the William Donald Schaefer Civic Fund, a living memorial to Governor Schaefer, honoring and perpetuating his lifelong dedication to Baltimore's neighborhoods.

To find out more about BCF's work in neighborhoods, click here.

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