BATON ROUGE, La (BRPROUD)- The Louisiana Art & Science Museum (LAS) received a $168,833 federal grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) for “Healthy Aging with LASM.”

The three-year arts and wellness program will serve senior adults in our eleven-parish capitol region through a variety of in-person and virtual activities. This program will be delivered in partnership with the Capital Area Agency on Aging, the Baton Rouge General Arts in Medicine Program, and Dr. Rebecca Bartlett.

“Senior adults are facing unprecedented levels of isolation, stress, and health risk due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” stated Nita Mitchell, LASM’s Director of Education. “To serve this vulnerable and sometimes overlooked population, our staff will collaborate with experts in the field of art and medical science as well as community partners. This combination of virtual and in-person programming is vital to combating isolation, fostering meaningful connections, and promoting healthy aging.” 

LASM will serve senior adults by providing free programming including “Virtual Voyages,” which will include hands-on activities; distributing Virtual Reality headsets pre-loaded with virtual art and science content and a 360-degree tour of LASM to capital region senior centers; hosting in-person workshops in partnership with arts and wellness specialists; and distributing free museum admission passes. 

The goal of “Healthy Aging with LASM” is to impact 6,000 senior adult program participants in the 11-parish capital region throughout its three-year implementation process, promoting lifelong learning and breaking down barriers that limit senior adults’ ability to access LASM. “As pillars of our communities, libraries and museums bring people together by providing important programs, services, and collections,” stated IMLS Director Crosby Kemper. “IMLS is proud to support their initiatives through our grants as they educate and enhance their communities.”