IT’S A W.I.N. (Art and Wellness in Nature)

IT’S A W.I.N. (Art and Wellness in Nature) is a comprehensive program designed to reduce obesity, prevent cardiovascular disease, and improve mental health through physical activity and engagement in the arts. IT’S A W.I.N. offers culturally competent, multi-pronged services through partnerships with community organizations. The program design is based upon research demonstrating that time spent in nature and engagement in the creative arts improves both mental and physical health.

There are five key components to IT’S A W.I.N:

  1. A training session for community partner instructors where we present the health benefits of art and nature, host a relevant speaker, and help select a program best suited for their clientele.
  2. An artist-led field trip with free transportation for the organization to visit Brushwood Center.
  3. Materials for each student, including: a healthy snack, take-home packet, and letter to caregivers (in English and Spanish) highlighting the day and how they can encourage arts and nature exploration at home at no or low cost.
  4. A Brushwood Center staff visits their location for a follow-up IT’S A W.I.N. program, co-facilitated with the instructor who attended the training session.
  5. A Family Day featuring student artwork, healthy snacks, and a guided mindfulness walk in the woods.

By having multiple touch points and creating bridges to other organizations supporting wellness initiatives, the IT’S A W.I.N. program is designed to help change behavior resulting in more time spent engaging in the creative arts and in spending time outdoors. Not only do we anticipate this leading to improved human health and wellbeing, but also contributing to better stewardship of the environment which ultimately supports health and wellness all living creatures.

IT’S A W.I.N. programming is customized for each partner organization, taking into account the needs of the clientele, health and wellbeing goals, budget, and other parameters.

If you are interested in participating or supporting IT’S A W.I.N, please contact Karen Lewis at klewis@brushwoodcenter.org.