Miriam’s Kitchen Honored at Mayor’s Arts Awards

Miriam’s Kitchen Honored at Mayor’s Arts Awards

Award for “Innovation in the Arts” Granted for Work with D.C.’s Chronically Homeless Population

October 24, 2013 – Washington, D.C. – Miriam’s Kitchen today announced that it has been recognized by the Mayor’s Arts Awards, in the category of Innovation in the Arts. The Mayor’s Arts Award is the highest honor conferred by the District of Columbia in acknowledgement of artistic excellence and service among artists, arts organizations and arts patrons in the city.

The award recognizes Miriam’s Studio, a program that offers an array of creative services that provide Miriam’s Kitchen’s guests a safe opportunity to share, participate and grow. Among the program’s offerings are art therapy, creative writing workshops, theater, spoken word, and yoga. The award was shared with the Corcoran Gallery of Art, which tied with Miriam’s Kitchen for its ArtReach program.

“Our guests are at the center of all that we do, and we are honored to receive this award on their behalf,” said Art Therapist and Senior Case Manager, Lindsey Vance. “In all of our work, Miriam’s Kitchen honors our guests’ dignity, provides them with a place of belonging and, ultimately, guides them towards change. Miriam’s Studio is proven to help us meet all three goals.”

Miriam’s Studio is rooted in a true collaborative effort between Miriam’s Kitchen’s staff, employees, volunteers and neighboring arts institutions. Program offerings include:

  • a popular, twice-daily creative writing group, during which guests analyze and discuss works of poetry and prose, then share and critique their own creations in a group format;
  • a partnership with Theater J, which invites Miriam’s Kitchen’s guests to attend performances throughout the year, and brings performers to Miriam’s Kitchen;
  • a relationship with George Washington University’s Department of Art Therapy, which provides Miriam’s Studio with graduate interns. Each year, these talented students share their expertise with Miriam’s Kitchen guests and ensure that the day-to-day operations of Miriam’s Studio run smoothly;
  • community partnerships with the Arts in Foggy Bottom Outdoor Sculpture Exhibit, Art Enables, and the Young Playwrights’ Theatre, among others, allow Miriam’s Kitchen’s guests to further participate in the city’s art’s community.

The award comes on the heels of two highly successful art exhibits. “MK Studio: Dignity-Belonging-Change,” showed through the month of October at George Washington University’s student-run art space, “Gallery 102.”  The exhibition featured work by current and former Miriam’s Kitchen guests in a variety of media, including painting, jewelry, poetry, photography, spoken word and sculpture; representing the array of media available to those who participate in Miriam’s Studio.

Also, four of Miriam’s Studio’s artists were represented in Art Enables’ Outsider Art Inside the Beltway exhibit, the Washington, D.C. area’s largest exhibition of outsider, folk and self-taught artists featuring both locally and nationally selected artists.

“Each year, the Mayor’s Arts Awards honor the very most prestigious arts institutions in the city, and we’re incredibly proud to be in their company,” said Catherine Crum, Executive Director at Miriam’s Kitchen. “The efforts of so many fantastic organizations ensure that Washington, D.C. will continue to have a rich, dynamic arts landscape well into the future. We strive to ensure that our guests are a part of that community.”

About Miriam’s Kitchen
Celebrating 30 years of service, Miriam’s Kitchen is committed to ending chronic homelessness in Washington, D.C. Miriam’s Kitchen advocates for permanent supportive housing as a long-term solution, while meeting short-term needs by providing healthy meals and high-quality social services to more than 5,000 homeless individuals each year.  www.miriamskitchen.org

Press Contact:
Tom Murphy
Director of Communication
Miriam’s Kitchen
(202) 452-8926 ext 235