The arts span every facet of life – the White House just hosted a summit about it

Christopher Bailey, co-director of the Jameel Arts & Health Lab, participated in 'Healing, bridging, thriving: A summit on arts and culture in our communities'  hosted by the White House Domestic Policy Council and National Endowment of the Arts. Christopher gave remarks highlighting the work of the Jameel Arts & Health lab, a research collaboration launched in 2023 by the World Health Organisation (WHO) Regional Office for Europe, NYU Steinhardt, Community Jameel and CULTURUNNERS to produce and leverage scientific research into the effectiveness of the arts in improving health and wellbeing.

Following the US President Joe Biden's executive order stating the arts are "essential to the well-being, health, vitality and democracy of our Nation," the event was an opportunity for leaders from multiple sectors to discuss ways to amplify the arts and to announce the National Endowment for the Arts first ever artist-in-residence programme.


"Music," said U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy, "can, in a matter of seconds, make me feel better." He spoke from the Constitution Center in Washington, D.C., continuing, "I've prescribed a lot of medicines as a doctor over the years. There are few I've seen that have that kind of extraordinary, instantaneous effect."

It was exactly the kind of message organizers of "Healing, Bridging, Thriving," wanted to convey.

The summit was organized by the White House Domestic Policy Council and the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). Policy makers, arts and community leaders, funders and artists attended.

Organizers believe this was a "first-of-its-kind convening" that explored how the arts can make people healthier, "invigorate physical spaces, fuel democracy, and foster equitable outcomes."


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