Training and Education Programs

Elders Share the Arts (ESTA) offers high-caliber arts programming that ignites creative expression, cultivates elders' role as bearers of history and culture, and generates new pathways to connect them to their communities. ESTA's residencies are a springboard for developing and researching replicable programs, and through our training programs we provide opportunities for organizations to help serve this growing population.

Founded in 1979, ESTA helped pioneer the field of creative aging, with its shift from a deficit model to an asset model of aging that focuses on the wisdom, creativity, and vitality of older people. Creative aging focuses on the beneficial and powerful role of the arts in enhancing the quality of life for older adults, and is increasingly recognized as an important contributor to positive aging.

An important part of our leadership in the field has been our education and training programs, based on a wealth of knowledge that few organizations in our field have developed.  ESTA leads a variety of training programs in different formats – from 60 min presentations about the proven benefits of Creative Aging, to in-depth half-day and full-day workshops, to 3-day experiential trainings, often bringing partners from the silos of aging and the arts together for a unified experience, launching new creative aging programs around the country.  Past partnerships include the Pennsylvania State Council on the Arts with the Pennsylvania Department of Aging, and the New York State Council on the Arts with the Monroe County Office for the Aging in Rochester.

Topics include: Definition of Creative Aging and Exploration of the Field; Issues in Program Development including planning, design, recruitment, implementation, and evaluation; Teaching Artist Skills: Gathering the Stories and Transforming Memory into Art, including explorations into literary, performing, and visual art forms; and Funding and Sustaining Creative Aging Programs.

Please contact ESTA's Executive Director for more information.