Tag Archives: philanthropy

2012 Art Supply Drive for At-Risk Kids!

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School is back in session and I’m hosting my annual ART SUPPLY DRIVE!  I’ll be volunteer-teaching art journaling to at-risk public school students soon, and though I donate my time and some supplies, I can’t afford to provide all they need on my own.  Won’t you please lend a hand?  Whether you choose to donate supplies, gift cards, or funds, you’ll be making a big difference in the lives of many.

Please watch this brief video to learn a bit more about my program.  It includes photos, video footage from an art journal show in Santa Ana, and testimonials from teachers and school staff – proof that art journaling is a wonderful addition to the curriculum…

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Why I Do This…
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My mission is to provide as many children as I can with art journaling instruction and supplies.  Not only does this program nurture their creativity and provide art instruction that would otherwise be missing because of curriculum and budget constraints, art journaling also helps get the children excited about their overall educational experience.

And, perhaps most importantly, art journaling gives the children a constructive way to express themselves and process the world around them.  This is particularly important for these at-risk students, who are often facing the effects of poverty, abuse, neglect, exposure to gangs and drugs, and absent parents.

I, too, faced many challenges when I was a child, including abuse and poverty, and know from experience that creative self-expression can be a lifesaver.  I know that a trustworthy adult taking a special interest in you can make a big impression, and that a proverbial pat on the back can really boost one’s self-esteem.  I also know that art and writing have the power to strengthen, nourish, and heal, and hope to plant a love for art journaling and creative self-expression in the lives of as many children as I can.

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Wish List
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My goal is to teach three classrooms full of students this year – two in Santa Ana and one in Ontario.  I hope to receive enough donations to create 135 art journaling kits for the kids (45 kits for each class). Though donations aren’t yet tax-deductible, I hope you’ll help provide art journaling supplies for the children.  Please consider donating in one of the following ways – I’ve starred the items I need the most:

**MONETARY DONATIONS in any amount.  I use the “cash” to buy the blank art journals, which are the foundation of the supply kits.

**GIFT CARDS for **Michaels, Target, or Office Max in any amount – even “remaining amounts”, like $4.73!

SUPPLIES – I’d love to receive the following in quantities of 45, 90, or 135, but will happily accept whatever you’d like to send.

**Glue sticks
*Children’s scissors
*Crayons – Crayola packs of 8
*Mini ink pads – assorted colors
*Alphabet stickers

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Paper doilies
Loteria packs (Mexican Bingo)
Pencils – unsharpened
Ballpoint Pens
Stickers
Glassine envelopes
Ribbon – at least ½” wide, please
Die cut shapes
Cancelled postage stamps
Fabric – fat quarters or other smaller pieces, please.  Pre-cut 5″ squares would be fantastic!
Cardstock – any color assortments welcome (12″ x 12″ or smaller)
Patterned paper – any assortments welcome (12″ x 12″ or smaller)

You may also send assorted arts and craft supplies, which will be put into a “mush pot” for the classroom teachers and children to pull from during the year…

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Donation Deadline

Though I accept donations year-round, I’d like to receive donations for this year’s classes by November 6, 2012.  This will allow me enough time to shop for the remaining items I need and assemble the art journaling kits for the students before heading into the classrooms.

Please email me through this site’s contact page if you would like to donate, and I’ll provide my mailing address. Oh, and please share this post with other kind and generous people you think might like to donate.  I’d love this to go viral, so please spread the word on Facebook, Twitter, to online groups, and via email.  :]  Thanks so much!

Warm regards,
Melody

Posted in art, art journaling, art supplies, helping others | Also tagged , , 4 Comments

Your “Good Deed for the Day” Opportunity Awaits!

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Today’s post is a friendly reminder that I’m still accepting donations for my upcoming art journaling class for at-risk children, which will take place in December.  (For a refresher, or if you missed the first post, please read all about it here)  I’m happy to share that readers of both my blog and Jenny Doh’s blog have donated, and I sincerely appreciate all those who have given funds or supplies.  Thank you for your support!

And while we’re off to a great start in providing supplies for the children, additional donations will help me provide them with more of the basics they need, and will help add a bit more “oomph” to their art journaling kits.  Won’t you consider a donation of a gift card or supplies?  Whether you donate $5, a manila envelope full of patterned paper you’re not using, or a $500 gift card to Dick Blick, you’ll help nurture the creativity and overall educational experience of children facing some serious challenges. Please take a peek at the wish list below:

Gift Cards:
Michaels, Target, or Office Max gift cards (in any amount)

Art supplies – in quantities of 45, please:
Crayons (8 count packs)
Stickers
Patterned paper
Cardstock
Sticker letters
Mini envelopes
Mini inkpads
Foot-long pieces of Punchinella

“Mush pot” art supplies:
Art and crafting supplies in any quantity.  These odds and ends (like paper, ribbon, and other goodies) might come from your personal art stash as you weed out things you aren’t using.

I’ll be accepting donations until November 21, 2010.  Please contact me through this site’s contact page if you’re interested in donating.  I’ll be happy to provide my mailing address.

Thank you for your consideration!

Warm regards,
Melody

* The artwork above was created by a student from the 2009-2010 art journaling class

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Art Journaling: Making a Difference in the Lives of Children

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As one who has been helped in many ways by many wonderful people during my lifetime, I feel very strongly about helping others.  I try to donate to charity and/or give my time to multiple causes each year.  Whether it’s buying Secret Santa gifts for homeless children, or donating food to the local food bank, I regularly take action on charitably-based opportunities.

My Favorite Way to Give

One of my favorite ways to donate time and money is through my own little art journaling project – something I first did back in 2003, and have done during three different school years thus far.  My aunt, who is an amazing elementary school teacher, would tell me about her students and the challenges they faced: poverty, abuse, gangs, drugs, and incarcerated or otherwise absent parents.  Their stories broke my heart, and I knew I had to do what I could to help.

I decided I’d teach the kids visual journaling: the combination of writing/journaling, drawing, and collage.  In addition to nurturing their creativity and language skills, I teach these classes in the hopes that I’ll give them a positive, creative outlet to help them process the crazy world we live in.  Art and writing have been essential to me as I’ve traveled through life, and I am hoping to plant these seeds in children that are facing so many challenges.

How the Class Works

Each student receives a blank journal and a packet full of art supplies that they keep at school until the end of the school year.  I teach the class – an introduction to art journaling – and provide a handout with a how-to overview and journaling prompts for future use.  When I visit the class for the first time they complete two or three journal entries, which helps to reinforce the different ways they can use their journal for fun and as a tool.

As the school year progresses, the children do additional work in their art journals and we finish with an end-of-year art journal show that I attend.  The first three end-of-year shows we’ve held were a great success, and it always fills my heart with joy to see the excitement and pride of the children as they share what they’ve created.

Others Are Lending a Hand

I donate my time and some of the supplies for this endeavor, and usually solicit donations from friends and family to fill in the gaps.  However, this year donations are going to a whole new level.  Jenny Doh from crescendoh.com has generously offered to provide supplies for the children’s art journal packets, and is also getting her readers involved.  She’s giving her readers an opportunity to get in on the giving, and has written a lovely blog post about my project here.  I’m so thankful for her shared enthusiasm about this project.  I know how big a difference it makes in the lives of these children, and I’m thrilled Jenny recognizes it too and is supporting the program.

How You Can Help

Because there is such great need, I hope you will consider making a donation too, dear readers.  Since crescendoh.com is coordinating the bulk of the donations and materials could be duplicated between our gathering efforts, please consider sending me a gift card to Michael’s or Target.  (If you’d rather send tangible art supplies, please contact me.)  Whether you send a gift card worth $5 or $50, you’ll be helping these children in a potentially life-changing way!

If you’re interested in donating, please email me through this website’s CONTACT page so I can provide my mailing address and so I’ll know to keep an eye out for your envelope or package.  I hope to receive all donations by November 21, 2010.

Please note: The art journal pages in the photo above were created by a student who participated in the 2009-2010 art journaling class.

Thank you for your time and consideration!

Warm regards,
Melody

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