About Arts & AGEing KC
WHO WE ARE
Deb Campbell, Founder
Deb Campbell is an entrepreneur with more than thirty- five years combined experience in the fields of social gerontology and theatre education that led her to start Arts & AGEing KC, a nonprofit organization that serves as catalyst, convener and connector for enriching lives through creative aging. She is a visionary that has taken a rich work history that includes social services and community outreach for retirement and assisted living communities, ownership of a drama studio and direction of a high school theatre department, melding them together into unique intergenerational community arts and creative aging experiences.
Deb's passion for theatre arts runs deep—an accomplished playwright, herself, Deb has been writing, directing and producing original plays for intergenerational casts since 1996, specializing in original self‐revelatory theatre that gives voice to lived experiences of older adults and focuses on issues relevant to aging. Two plays—Seven Stages, Seven Stories, and Dancing With Crow’s Feet—received ‘Best of Show’ recognition in Kansas City Fringe Festivals. One was presented at the 2016 global conference on creative aging in Washington DC and the other at a prestigious international congress on gerontology and geriatric medicine in San Francisco in 2017. Deb created Flights to Remember, another original piece inspired by life stories, in 2018 when she was invited to Singapore to lead creative aging workshops with older adults and professional caregivers. Deb worked with over 135 nursing home residents and caregivers in seven nursing homes across Singapore. The culmination was an original devised play that performed as the Opening Ceremony for the 2018 Southeast Asia Global Conference on Integrated Care.
Deb has a Masters of Science in Social Gerontology; she studied Drama Therapy as an Alternative Track student at Kansas State University; she is a trained facilitator of Aging Mastery through the National Council on Aging, and is a graduate of the Kauffman Foundation’s FastTrac Entrepreneurial program. Deb is a sought-after presenter on the topics of creative aging, reframing aging, self-revelatory and devised theatre and intergenerational theatre programming.
Deb lives in Kansas City with her husband Mike. They have four daughters and 3 grandsons.
Arts & AGEing KC programs were designed to be intentionally interactive and participatory, customized to the needs and interests of different individuals. AAKC is at the forefront of the national conversation surrounding the impact of meaningful arts experiences, and has received recognition in the field.
Since 2008 research has grown and continues to reinforce that artful aging yields quality of life improvements for older adults, builds community, reduces isolation, and positively impacts brain health.
Additionally, there is mounting evidence of the powerful and transformative impact of arts on older adults who have chronic health complications such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease. Findings show enhancement in quality of life and improved social interactions.
WHAT WE DO
We're part of the culture change for aging, seeing the potentialities in aging - asset not deficit.
Ageism has been called "the next big thing." By 2030, 1 out of 5 Americans will be 65 or older.
AAKC designs and implements original, evidence-based, meaningful arts programs that are adoptable by other groups or organizations and engage older adults together with youth through professionally led, participatory arts programs that build community.
We aim to enhance the quality of life and improve physical, mental, emotional, social and spiritual health outcomes through creative aging across the lifespan.
No other organization in the region is blending creativity, consciousness and compassion for older adults the way Arts & AGEing is. Join our movement and make a difference.
What people are saying
WHO WE SERVE
Older adults who are exploring ways to engage meaningfully in the community
Aging service providers
Family and professional caregivers
Civic and community leaders
Businesses who are re-imagining aging
Leaders in the field of social justice for livable communities and age-inclusive communities
The professionals at Arts & AGEing KC can consult with you to review, improve or develop a program for your community or group. Contact us to get acquainted and explore the beautiful possibilities!
Groups We've Worked With
Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
Northland Professionals in Aging
Olathe Civic Theatre Association
Olathe Public Library
Our Lady of Mercy Country Home
Park Hill South High School
Positive Aging Coalition
Puppetry Arts Institute
Rehabilitation Institute of Kansas City
Riverside Community Center
Shawnee Town 1929 Living Museum
St. Mary’s College
Stratford Commons Memory Care
Swope Ridge Gardens
The Story Center
The Writers Place
Tri-County Mental Health
Tutera Senior Living and Health Care
Unity Temple on the Plaza
Veterans Voices Writing Project
Women of the Drum
Activity Directors Association of Missouri
Age Mastery Program
Agency for Integrated Care in Singapore
Alzheimer’s Association – Heart of America Chapter
Alzheimer’s Poetry Project
Benton House of Lee’s Summit
Bethel Greencastle Retirement Apartments
Billie Mahoney Dance Studio
Black Archives of Mid-America
Blue Valley High School
Brookdale Overland Park
City Union Mission
Clay County Senior Services
Continua Home Health Care
Deanna Rose Children’s Farmstead
Don Bosco Senior Center
Epstein Art Gallery
Flying Heart Theatre
Freedoms Frontier Heritage Area
Hallmark Artists – Wishes for the World
Heart of America Alzheimer’s Association
Heart of America Shakespeare Festival
International Congress on Gerontology and Geriatric Medicine
Jewish Community Center
Johnson County Community College
Johnson County Parks and Recreation Dept.
Johnson County Public Library
Kansas Activity Directors Association
Kansas University Alzheimer’s Research Center
KC Fringe Festival
KC Regional Storytellers
Keeler Women’s Center
KU - Turning Point: Center of Health and Healing
KU Alzheimer’s Disease Center
Leawood Senior Center
Liberty Performing Arts Center
Martin Luther King Village Retirement Apartments
MC5 – Pioneer Network
McCrite Plaza at Briarcliff
Metropolitan Association for Music Therapies
Mid-America Assistance Coalition
Mid-America Regional Council – Aging Services
Mid-America Regional Council – Communities for All Ages
Missouri Institute on Minority Aging
National World War I Museum
We are grateful to our sponsors for their ongoing and meaningful support.
Help us enrich lives today.