Southeast Mental Health Services receives NEA grant to support Mural Project

La Junta, CO— National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Chairman Rocco Landesman announced today that Southeast Mental Health Services is one of 153 not-for-profit organizations nationwide to receive an NEA Challenge America Fast-Track grant. Southeast Mental Health Services is recommended for a $10,000 grant to design and create a cultural and historical mural with professional St. Louis artist, Catharine Magel, to be installed at the 100 Kendall Drive facility in Lamar.

In this FY 2013 funding round, the NEA received 393 eligible Challenge America Fast-Track applications, requesting a total of $3,930,000.  The NEA will award 153 Challenge America Fast-Track grants totaling $1.53 million awarded to organizations in 41 states, Washington, DC, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. These include 49 first-time Arts Endowment grantees. The Challenge America Fast-Track category offers support primarily to small and mid-sized organizations for projects that extend the reach of the arts to populations whose opportunities to experience the arts are limited by geography, ethnicity, economics, or disability.

“This will be a beautiful undertaking for the whole Lamar community to come together and explore their history,” said SEMHS CEO/Executive Director, Becky Otteman.  “It’s an opportunity for people who don’t use our services to be a part of the work we do for the Lamar community.”

“The NEA was founded on the principle that the arts belong to all the people of the United States,” said NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman. “We’re proud that Challenge America Fast-Track grants bring more opportunities for arts engagement to underserved communities.”

See the complete listing of projects recommended for Challenge America Fast-Track grant support at

Since 1957, Southeast Mental Health Services has been providing comprehensive outpatient mental health services for the citizens and communities of Baca, Bent, Crowley, Kiowa, Otero and Prowers counties in southeastern Colorado.

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Jeannie Larsen, Human Resource Specialist

Filed Under: ArtBusinessFeaturedHealthLamarProwers County


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