Overall Evaluation Results
58% gave the workshop the highest rating. 38% gave it the next highest rating.
Partnering with CavanKerry Press was a dream—even though it was already late January when I contacted Joan and Teresa to plan events for April, they immediately said yes. We hatched a two-part project that would support the goals of NJCH’s Literature & Medicine: Humanities at the Heart of Health Care program, and CavanKerry’s mission. We would bring poets into hospitals to lead workshops for staff and also create an online chapbook of poetry dealing with illness and healing as a lasting resource (click here to read the thirty poems collected there). By the end of April, four hospitals held workshops led by CavanKerry poets. I’m really proud that 97% of participants rated the workshop either a 4 or 5 on a five-point scale. I can’t imagine what we’ll be able to accomplish with more time to plan!
Mary Rizzo, Associate Director, New Jersey Council for the Humanities
Although only two staff people had signed up for my Poetry Heals Workshop at the Morristown Medical Center, I was thrilled to meet the approximately twenty nurses, doctors, social workers and students who actually came. They wanted to experience how poetry heals, for themselves and their patients. In between the poems I read about illness, mostly about multiple sclerosis and cancer, the participants eagerly asked questions, also shared their experiences and ideas. During the final part of the workshop, everyone wrote her own list poem–for many it was their very first poem–then read it aloud as we went around the room. I was delighted!
Joan Seliger Sidney, Poet
Some comments from participants:
“I used to feel poetry had no effect on my life. Now I see there is value in this art form.”
“I really enjoyed the interactive nature of this activity and am excited I can call myself a poet.”
“Good experience. Opened my eyes, mind and heart.”
“It offered insight and helped us to think of other’s feelings.”