Believe you can and you're halfway there.” Theordore RooseveltSunday, November 30th was the third annual Christmas art show and sale for art.works.
It was a day of celebration. Of spirits flying freely and of hope living joyously in the hearts of the artists and all who attended.
Two and a half years ago when I started the program, it was a dream. An idea. A possibility.
Sunday, I looked around the room, crowded with artists and patrons and realized, I had believed it was possible and now my dream is no longer my dream. It is a community spirit. A reality for all who attended. A truth for each artist and that truth is: I have value. I am worth more than the label 'homeless'. I am an artist. A human being. Creative soul. Expressive spirit. I am a man/woman of possibilities.
Seven artists had their works on display. Another played guitar. Tamara, a young fourteen year old girl who created a charitable organization, Heartprints, Kids for a Cause, so she could sell her handmade jewelry and donate the money to charity, was also there. She raised $500 for the DI.
Wild Rose United Church sponsored the show and had a cafe complete with Nanaimo bars and scrumptious cookies. Nan and Gordon the hosts, welcomed everyone and made everyone feel at home.There was never a lull in the flow of people entering the hall. Never a period where I worried about whether or not the show would be a success.
Success is the artists turning up. Success is the pride on their faces as people drop into their booth and admire a piece of work they created with their hands. Success is the media dropping by to do a story for the newspaper, complete with photographs of the artists and their work. Success is knowing, lives are being changed. Dreams are being crafted. Hopes are being awoken. Possibilities are being created.
Success is written on the hearts of everyone who was there.
Everyone who entered was in awe of the talent of the artists. Their commitment to turn up and express themselves. Their desire to support each other, and their dreams.
And with every piece that was sold, a bit of the artist went home with them. Home. To a place where they belonged, to a family, a couple, a single woman adorning her apartment with a piece of beauty.
The artists may be homeless, but their art found homes yesterday. And if that can happen, finding a way home is possible too.
All they have to do is believe they can get there. They're half way there.
Thank you to everyone who participated. The artists. Staff who helped out. Linda Hunter and Wild Rose United Church. Tamara and her mother Bev, Tom and the crew from the Woodwork Shop. The staff who ensured the art and artists arrived safely and all the people who came out to support the artists and their work.
You light up our lives.