Plato thought that the single most important feat for any society was to teach its young people how to find pleasure in the “right” things — and current research shows that the experience of creative engagement may be the most valuable and pleasurable “right” thing we humans can achieve. Considering the current crisis emerging within Butte’s youth population, with suicide rates rising at unprecedented speed, it seems both imperative and wise to gather effective resources in their favor. The Root & The Bloom has begun to partner with a number of individuals and organizations to address and combat Butte’s rising suicide and addiction rates through access to the arts and other soul-enriching disciplines.
The act of telling and making strengthens our individual and collective selves, enhances curiosity and optimism, and fosters human development and complexity in a number of positive ways. Creative engagement encourages and girds what researchers call habits of mind, some of which are listed below, and all of which support young people in their “coming of age”:
• Persistence and commitment
• Thinking and communicating with clarity and precision
• Managing impulsivity, maintaining humility
• Gathering data through all senses
• Listening with understanding and empathy
• Creating, imagining, innovating
• Thinking flexibly and exponentially
• Responding with wonderment, awe and joy
• Thinking about thinking (metacognition)
• Taking responsible risks
• Striving for accuracy
• Finding humor
• Questioning and posing problems and solutions
• Thinking interdependently
• Applying past knowledge to new situations
• Remaining open to continuous learning
The Root & The Bloom Collective, a non profit organization, raises funds to support the art and culture programming for youth and adults provided by the Historic Clark Chateau. Through grants, donations and volunteer time, they support and ensure that the arts and humanities programming at the Clark Chateau keeps the historic building thriving as a vibrant community space.
The Clark Chateau works collaboratively with local youth, creating tangible projects that can be shared with the public, building self-esteem and supporting self-guided expression. We work in unison with other civic and arts organizations, sharing ideas, events and resources. Our youth mission emphasizes the importance of literacy, community engagement, leadership, mental health and creative collaboration. The Chateau is a host for community events that co-mingle adults with youth, creating opportunities for intergenerational cross-pollination and organic mentorship.
- WILLIAM WORDSWORTH
"How does the meadow flower its bloom unfold? Because the lovely little flower is free down to its root, and in that freedom bold."