Various pieces of art are on display through May in common areas at AHCCCS, thanks to artists in the PSA Art Awakenings program. Since it began in 2000, the PSA Art Awakenings program has been nationally recognized as a leading psychosocial rehabilitation and art therapy program, annually helping more than 2000 youth and adults in Arizona work toward empowerment and recovery through creativity. The program operates 15 studios and five galleries in Arizona.
The idea to exhibit the art came from Kathy Bashor, an AHCCCS employee familiar with PSA Art Awakenings, and also familiar to life with mental illness, having herself learned to manage anxiety and depression. When she shared the idea with Health Care Advocacy Coordinator Susan Junck, Susan agreed that such an exhibit could start a dialogue with colleagues that would serve to reduce stigma and stereotypes about mental illness in the workplace. Supported by executive leadership, Susan and Kathy are planning to host an Artists’ Reception in May during Mental Health Awareness Month to continue to increase understanding and empathy within the AHCCCS community of employees.
PSA Art Awakenings is sponsored by PSA Behavioral Health Agency, a nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing & empowering the behavioral health community through creativity, innovation, recovery & diversity.