Art Enhances Recovery at Hope Academy

Hope Academy, the recovery high school at Fairbanks offers students in recovery from drug and alcohol addiction a supportive environment where they can achieve academic success and sobriety. This semester, the students of Hope Academy have enjoyed a new creative art program made possible by a generous grant from The Christel DeHaan Family Foundation. Through this grant, Art with a Heart has provided art instruction to all students. Art with a Heart is a local not for profit organization that teaches at-risk youth how to be successful using art.

Student projects have included sidewalk art, self tape sculptures, memorial alters, abstract, landscape, narrative art and more. As the semester comes to an end, students have proudly displayed their artwork in the atrium of the Fairbanks Recovery Center for the community to see. While the outcomes have been impressive, the process of composing these pieces of art has been a unique opportunity for personal growth for many students.

“Art allows our students to express their emotions about life and recovery in a visual format. It is very therapeutic and an excellent way for them to learn about themselves and each other,” says Gale Stone, principal of Hope Academy.

Facilitating a supportive community is a key element to the mission of the charter school. This art class enhanced the bond between all students as they have experienced teamwork, persistence and problem solving together. Positive relationships and trust have been built as a direct outcome of this special gift to the school.