Sunday, November 13, 2016

11/9/2016 — Ravenswood School District/Belle Haven Elementary School

Ms. Alexis Hamilton just posted an absolutely amazing and highly moving paragraph about the event. It's so beautiful I think it deserves an entire post of its own! Therefore, I've pasted it here:

A young woman's act of kindness made a huge difference for me last week. As you know, I teach in a very high poverty school. Although we live right next to the enormous wealth of Palo Alto and the Silicon Valley, I have to beg and borrow to scrape together art supplies for my classes. And these kids need art. They live with the trauma of poverty under the dark cloud of insecurity... they don't always know where they will sleep at night, they don't know when their parents might be deported, they have watched brothers and uncles and fathers hauled away in the middle of the night for crimes they may or may not have committed. They have watched and sometimes felt the pain of domestic violence and lived with the devastation of drug addition. They themselves fear being taken from their homes and put into the foster care system. Into this darkness an amazing high school student raised the money needed to donate almost $1000 in art supplies through a foundation she created. She sells her own very impressive artwork to raise the money for her foundation. As a thanks to her for the exceptional good she is doing to heal the world through art, please take a minute to see her web page... she would really appreciate it... and I would too... please help me give thanks to this wonderful person who is using her gifts to benefit children with so little. 
Thank you Sohini Kar

Thank you so much for those kind words, Ms. Hamilton!

Friday, November 11, 2016

11/9/2016 — Ravenswood Elementary School

Leaning down, Ms. Alexis Hamilton, art teacher at Belle Haven Elementary, gingerly shakes a small tub with a few oil pastels rolling around. Then, raising her head, she smiles at the new set of pastels resting upon the table, exclaiming, “This feels like Christmas - I can’t tell you how excited I am!”  

Oil Pastels - Before (Left), Gifted New Set (Above)

Last Wednesday, November 9, Art and Craft 4 All, Inc, donated over 700 dollars’ worth of art supplies, from 1,000 18”x24” white sulfate drawing papers, to the aforementioned set of 288 oil pastels, to 15 gallons of acrylic paints, in colors like white, black, yellow, blue, and red (a full list of supplies is at the bottom). This gift was for the Belle Haven Elementary School, of the Ravenswood School District, which enrolls 550 students, who will all now use the donated supplies. 

The Shipment

School bathed in the afternoon’s dusty light, the team dropped off the supplies at around 3 o’clock. The school was mainly empty, save for a few stragglers, including Ms. Hamilton’s three helpers, who stayed behind to help her clean up the art classroom and reorganize their remaining materials. With communications dating back all the way to September 16, both parties had been eagerly awaiting this arrival, and Ms. Hamilton immediately found us and led us to the room. All the while, she exclaimed, “This is perfect timing! We’ve been using printer copy paper for our art this last weeks!”

Bringing the boxes in

There, they all unloaded all of the boxes, laying them out upon the table, with exclamations of delight following each one. Excited, Ms. Hamilton declared, “You can’t even begin to imagine how happy the kids will be… You’ve touched five hundred children.”

The materials, set out

Finally, the team finished setting everything up.  

Handshake, in front of the materials
The three helpers, Ms. Hamilton, and Sohini Kar (President)

From Art and Craft 4 All: We are immensely glad to have been able to provide these supplies to the students of Belle Haven. Seeing the glee and pleasure on the faces of the helpers was an incredible reward and put a positive twist to our day. We hope, with such an enthusiastic and upbeat teacher and with a a whole variety of brand-new supplies, the students will be able to experience art to their fullest

Full list of supplies: