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Introducing social therapeutics

13 October 2021 | Member Stories

East Side Institute Catalyst 2030 member story

SDG 3 Good health and well-being SDG 4 Quality Education SDG 5 Gender Equality

The East Side Institute is an international center for the study of social therapeutics and performance activism — bringing human and community development to the forefront of culture change and social transformation, and promoting alternative and radically humanizing approaches to psychology, education, and community building. Eastside focuses on SDGs 3, 4 and 5.

Based in New York, the East Side Institute offers many classes and events including a biennial international conference—Performing the World.  The Institute’s flagship program, The International Class introduces Social Therapeutics — a radically relational, cultural approach to human development, community building and leadership with unlimited potential to reinvigorate social activists and re-initiate developmental social change.

Key initiatives include:

The Joy of Dementia: The  goal of our workshops is to create an environment in which people living with dementia, care partners, other family and community members, including the “worried well” of all ages, and health and social service professionals can come together to learn how to create a more playful, joyful and growth-filled relationship to dementia, build a community of support — and share the full emotionality of their dementia experience.

Developing Across Borders:  A weekly, virtual, group-building activity where participants build a space — a development zone — to perform as world citizens, to play with language, invent new ways of being and seeing — and in so doing, produce new possibilities for themselves and their communities.

Play, Development and Social Justice: which engages and connects educational leaders and performance activists of all stripes to advance and promote opportunities for play and performance everywhere. Their challenge: Play and Joy Are Social Justice Issues!


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