It always feels great when you can put a smile on a child's face. But to delight dozens of Syrian refugee children — facing the most dire of circumstances — is a very special opportunity.
Lisa Waldstein’s Intermediate Studio Art class spent the winter painting portraits of Syrian children in refugee camps as part of a much larger program called The Memory Project, a nonprofit organization “that invites art teachers and their students to create and donate portraits to youth around the world who have faced substantial challenges, such as violence, disasters, extreme poverty, neglect, and loss of parents.”
“We want the portraits to help the children feel valued and important, to know that many people care about their well-being, and to act as meaningful pieces of personal history in the future,” according to The Memory Project officials. “For the art students, we want this to be an opportunity to creatively practice kindness and global awareness.”
GFA students joined thousands of other artists from around the world in creating works of art for Syrian children in refugee camps. The Memory Project then delivered the portraits to the children at the refugee camps. The results were inspiring.
“[The Syrian children] live in stark conditions in the refugee camps, and to receive portraits made just for them was truly a unique experience for all,” according to The Memory Project officials. “We’re so grateful for all of the extra time and effort [GFA] put into making this project possible. Together we are building a kinder world one portrait at a time and creating many cherished memories along the way.”
In addition to the portraits, GFA students raised $3,500 to support the aid organizations helping the children.
Click below to see their work in action: