The Look for the Good Project uses public art and gratitude to build a more peaceful community within schools, hospitals, public parks, and retirement centers. How does this work? Researchers are finding that gratitude builds stronger bonds, it makes you happier, healthier, decreases teen violence, and builds the resilience you need to carry you through tough times. This is why a public display of grateful thoughts has such a positive impact on the community. Not only are we inspiring viewers to read a multitude of grateful voices and creative expressions, but we are giving THEM a voice too with the invitation to answer the question, "What Makes You Grateful?" So far, this has been wonderfully effective in transforming lives. In fact, the project is being used at CT Valley Hospital, the largest mental health hospital in the state, as a tool among all their units (including their forensics unit). In addition, the CT Association of Schools has recently endorsed the project and I have been featured on MSNBC, WNPR, The Huffington Post, Reader's Digest, and Good Housekeeping Magazine, among others.
This summer, I am installing the second annual gratitude trail at Hammonasset Beach State Park. This consists of 100 grateful moment postcards reproduced on weather proof signage, strung along the boardwalk. As project founder and curator, my job is choose these cards, design the reproduction signage in an artistic way, and then print and install these cards along the beach. I will additionally have to maintain the trail all summer as well as start the process of producing gratitude trails like this in other areas. Additionally, I am putting together another book as well as creating a video series sharing some of the more powerful stories that have come in.
Funded by Connecticut (March 2014)