I was touched by the story of Dan and Janean Toone, who started Young at Art in response to the care that their young grandson received while spending most of his first year of life in the hospital.
As art lovers themselves, Dan and Janean decided to combine their appreciation for the hospital staff with a way to show some love and encouragement to the other young patients they had met there. And Young at Art was born!
Even though Young at Art is no longer operating, I hope their story will serve as inspiration to others looking for a way to ‘give back’ with art.
Young at Art distributed canvas bags filled with crayons, markers, colored pencils, and a sketch pad, to children in the hospital. They also included stories of famous artists and a prompt to inspire children to create their own art.
Similar to the ‘Buy One Give One’ model of Tom’s Shoes, for every art bag they sold, they would donate one to a child in need. Young at Art distributed their bags in hospitals and shelters, no doubt brightening many children’s days in the process.
Art has the power to heal, inspire, and encourage…. so good things can happen when people provide art opportunities to kids in need.
This is just one example of the many ways you can ‘give back’ with art. Art fundraiser projects like this one are another great way you can give to the cause of your choice.
How can you combine your own unique interests, abilities, and experiences to ‘give back’ with art?