A $500 grant from Stewart’s Holiday Match to support monthly art projects for at risk children
On March 23rd, 2016, BluSeed Studios received a grant award from Stewart’s Shops which will be used to help fund a series of monthly art projects for the Citizen Advocates Enhanced Mentor Program.
From Thanksgiving Day through Christmas Day 2015, Stewart’s customers donated $870,000 to the Stewart’s Holiday Match program, a $100,000 increase over the 2014 season! Those donations were doubled to more than $1.74 million through the generosity of the Stewart’s match. These funds are intended to be used directly for children 10 years or younger in the areas where the Stewart’s shops are located and the money is raised.
The Citizen Advocates Enhanced Mentor Program includes an after school program and summer youth program for children ages 5 to 12 from the Saranac Lake CSD. It offers a safe environment to gather with peers and participate in structured activities. These programs serve children who may be struggling in school, dealing with issues at home, or facing personal challenges. The goal of the program is to promote academic success, encourage healthy behaviors, and nurture positive choices.
It is widely agreed that art can be therapeutic, providing children with a healthy outlet for expression, improving self-esteem, reducing anxiety and depression, and potentially resulting in fewer behavioral problems and improved academic performance. BluSeed has already hosted several of these sessions, and they have been enthusiastically embraced. We are confident the program will be a success, and are extremely grateful for the funding provided by Stewart’s customers through the Stewarts Holiday Match program. BluSeed Studios Director of Development and Communications, Michelle Hannon, says about the grant, “This will help BluSeed Studios purchase art supplies and allow us to plan a wider range of art projects for these kids. From water color pencils and paper to speedball paper and ink for printing projects, it really opens up the possibilities of artistic media we can try.”
“I’m so grateful to Michelle Hannon and BluSeed Studios for hosting our program and offering the opportunity for children to become more active in the community.” says Andrea Palermo, the Citizen Advocates Enhanced Mentor Program Manager. “Every month, we look forward to the projects that BluSeed Studios arranges and we’re excited to be able to explore new mediums made possible by this grant.”
BluSeed Studios is a nonprofit organization whose mission is, “To provide space and opportunities where an artists and educators collaborate, experiment, diverge, exhibit and perform; to move ideas and aesthetics forward and to share this diversity with the community.” BluSeed was the vision of Carol Marie Vossler who in 2001, with the help of family and friends, began transforming a 1930’s era warehouse into studios and a gallery/performance space. It opened in 2003, and its initial board of directors was established in 2006 to guide BluSeed’s future development and further shape Carol’s vision.
BluSeed Studios houses a ceramic studio; two printmaking studios including nontoxic intaglio, relief and silkscreen printing, letterpress and book arts; a frame shop; seasonal papermaking studio and a drawing studio/classroom. A 2,000 square foot gallery also serves as a performance space for local, national and international artists and musicians. In addition, BluSeed includes office space, and living space for artists-in-residence. BluSeed Studios is supported by over 150 members, volunteers and a 16 member Board of Directors.