Story Navigation

Story Navigation

Story Navigation is a place-based community art project with Catholic Social Services’ 3rd Avenue Resource & Navigation Center at its heart and core. Visitors, partners, and staff of the Center are offered creative choices: opportunities to engage in a variety of artistic activities. Participants create in the mediums which best honor their voices and experiences – from music, to writing, to verbal storytelling – with artist Lauren S. H. Scantlebury serving as listener and facilitator.

By design, Story Navigation is adaptive. The Center is relatively new to our Anchorage community, and this project seeks to develop a greater understanding of the Center’s evolving needs. In later phases of the project, the community art will become more focused, with storytelling utilized as a tool to solve specific problems uncovered during early arts activities. Ultimately, Story Navigation serves to enhance the Center’s sense of connection through art: connection between visitors, partners, staff, as well as connection to the greater Anchorage community. 

In the month of August, I led a weekly creative gathering for staff, partners, and visitors at Catholic Social Services’ 3rd Avenue Resource & Navigation Center. Participants shared stories, played guitar, collaborated on poems, and engaged in creative writing or drawing in response to prompts. Witnessing their storytelling processes and the support they showed for one another’s work was an honor. As artists, they offered themselves and me a tremendous amount of trust, which was a remarkable act of courage. In return I learned the values of being present and adaptive in my community art engagement.  - Lauren Scantlebury


Lauren S. H. Scantlebury is an Alaska Native writer, musician, and community artist. She was raised in the community of South Naknek and has called Anchorage home since age 10. As a singer-songwriter she has released two albums: Emerging (2020) and All Things with Time (2022). She is dedicated to nurturing creativity on individual and community levels, spending her time writing memoir and songs, facilitating writing and creativity workshops, and helping arts organizations meet their developmental goals. 

Artist Website