Every October, millions of Americans are given the opportunity to explore the importance of the arts and humanities in our lives and communities. As we embark upon “National Arts & Humanities Month (NAHM), cities and towns are organizing innovative activities and events celebrating the impact the arts. One such campaign is via Instagram requiring people to #showYourArt2018 by posting daily themes. Today’s theme (October 3rd) is to post the word “art,” which the Bellevue University Library has done. Other suggestions can be found at https://www.americansforthearts.org/sites/default/files/images/2018/by-program/NAHMShowYourArt2018.jpg.
There are four primary goals of National Arts and Humanities Month:
- Focus on the arts and create a national, state, and local awareness through the media
- Encourage individual participation
- Allow businesses and other organizations an opportunity to declare their support
- Establish and raise a highly public awareness position about the role of arts and humanities
Since 1993, National Arts & Humanities Month has provided an opportunity to highlight its significance, and with the efforts of the National Endowment for Humanities (NEH) who supports excellence in education and research providing lifelong learning opportunities across the United States, the exposure is inspiring. In Nebraska, the NEH has allocated significant funding to the University of Nebraska, Lincoln to preserving history and digitization projects which are freely available to the public. Two such projects are “Digitizing America’s Greats: Walt Whitman, Willa Cather, and Lewis and Clark,” and “Bringing the Past to Life in Rural Nebraska.”
Regardless of where you live or who you are, there are ways you can commemorate and raise awareness throughout the month. You can submit articles to newspapers and/or magazines, partner with arts and cultural sponsors to help launch mentoring programs, and reach out through social media, just to name a few ideas. For more information or to learn more about ways you can do your part, check out the resources below: