FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Tidewater Arts Outreach produces art competition to instill vaccine confidence in the Hampton Roads community with support from the CDC Foundation

(Hampton Roads) – Tidewater Arts Outreach is being funded to create an innovative art competition that will harness the power of the arts to engage audiences and participants of all ages in overcoming COVID-19 and influenza vaccine hesitancy.

With support from the CDC Foundation, Tidewater Arts Outreach will launch the “Knowledge is an Art Form” competition deploying this region’s vast artistic talent to address the challenges of vaccine hesitancy and misinformation. Tidewater Arts Outreach was one of 30 organizations in the United States funded to use the arts to educate communities and encourage vaccination for COVID-19 and the flu.

“We are thrilled to partner with the CDC Foundation on this project,” says Tidewater Arts Outreach Executive Director, Kate Powell. “The arts are uniquely positioned to speak on these topics in an accessible and equitable way and our region’s artistic talent is rich enough to rise to that challenge. We are hopeful Hampton Roads can engage in a healthy dialogue about the history and science of vaccines and overcome the challenges of vaccine hesitancy through the artistic lens this project provides.”

“We are excited to bring the arts and science together in a really powerful way with these partnerships,” said Judy Monroe, MD, president and CEO of the CDC Foundation. “Through their chosen art forms, these organizations will be able to create accessible and inspiring work that communicates essential health information about the safety and importance of vaccination in protecting communities from COVID-19 and influenza.”

Through its “Knowledge is an Art Form” competition, Tidewater Arts Outreach will fund up to 20 finalists at $500 each to create a work of art that creatively communicates the science and function of vaccines and addresses the community’s concerns and reasons for vaccine hesitancy. The competition is open to any visual arts medium.

The proposal round for the competition is currently open to any visual artist residing or working within 50 miles of Norfolk. Deadline for proposals is January 31, 2022. Information for entering can be found at www.tidewaterartsoutreach.org.

Funding for this effort is made possible through a subaward from the CDC Foundation and is part of a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) financial assistance award totaling $2,500,000.00 with 100 percent funding from CDC/HHS. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement by, CDC/HHS or the U.S. Government.

About Tidewater Arts Outreach:

The mission of Tidewater Arts Outreach (TAO) is to bring joy to older adults and those living in isolating circumstances and enhance their well-being through creative engagement with the arts. Since its inception in 2004, Tidewater Arts Outreach has served 100,000 participants in over 3,500 programs. Programs are always free to participants and utilize the region’s vast artistic talent in music, visual arts, performing arts, and literary arts.