The Polk Museum of Art’s outreach programs serve the community as a vehicle for social change and civic engagement by providing arts exposure and enrichment to underserved residents of Polk County. These programs are designed in response to community need and attempt to elevate the appreciation of arts and culture, expand core community knowledge arenas, improve academic achievement and inspire new avenues of artistic expression. Targeting an array of populations throughout the community, PMA’s outreach initiative strives to touch lives and affect positive change.

Outreach programs include:

  • Creative Play Preschool Program
  • Parker Street After School Program
  • Parker Street Teen Program
  • Scholarship Program

Creative Play Preschool Program

The Creative Play Preschool Program is designed to serve the needs of 3, 4, and 5 year-olds attending homeless daycare centers at Lighthouse Ministries and Salvation Army in Lakeland. This program has been developed to provide an art-based learning approach to literacy and aid in preparing preschoolers for kindergarten.

Parker Street After School Program

The Parker Street After School Program provides approximately 80 at-risk youth (K5-5th) with additional arts exposure and a creative outlet for self-expression.

Parker Street Teen Program

In addition to providing at-risk teens with additional arts exposure and a creative outlet for self-expression, the Parker Street Teen Program provides life skills training. Participating students collaborate on developing their own T-shirt line and participate in the planning, product development, marketing, and sales of their product. Fifty percent of the proceeds generated from sales are then donated to a local charity of the teens’ choosing.

Scholarship Program

The Museum’s Scholarship Program is offered to youth and adults in need, and provides participants the opportunity to enroll in classes, camps and workshops free of cost.


Outreach programs are supported by: