[MORE PHOTOS!] from the 2nd Annual Matchbox Art Auction Gala

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Photos taken by Monica Kovach…thank you, Monica!

Student Blog Entry: Raising Funds and Raising Awareness – The Work Before the Work

“Raising Funds and Raising Awareness – The Work Before the Work”

by Emily Wilson

I am so incredibly excited, and perhaps just now realizing, that we are going to Cambodia to learn, to serve, to share our skills, and to build relationship.  That may seem strange, as this blog and project have been going on for over a year, a group of students already went and I had been accepted for this project months ago.  But for me, it is just becoming real.  So much preparation has been going on; learning about Cambodia and Trauma-Informed Art Therapy®, exploring cultural humility, discussing ethics, getting vaccines, figuring out the schedule logistics and NGOs that we will be partnering with, participating in community awareness events, and raising funds.  It is hard to believe that in less than two months, we will be on the plane to Cambodia getting ready to embark on a life changing experience.

So, how do we pay for the plane tickets, the art supplies to bring, the accommodation for students and supervisors while we are there?  The answer – A lot of hard work and all of you!   I began getting involved with NCAS-I at the beginning of 2012.  I helped serve in the role as Project Manger to organize the 2012 Art Auction Gala, then the 2012 Painting Marathon and now this year’s Art Auction Gala.  It took a dedicated and tireless body of student volunteers, community members, and faculty and staff to coordinate, and take responsibility for all of the moving parts to create these successful fundraisers.  Since the start of this project less than two years ago, we have held over 30 formal 2-4 hours meeting and countless one-off meetings, over 500 individually tracked tasks our control log, enough funds raised to ‘pay it forward’ to sponsor the next year’s trip each year, over 300 volunteers, 250 artists donating matchboxes, and numerous in-kind donations including entertainment, food and drink.

So, why do we do this?  Perhaps if each person took the countless hours invested to work a part time job, we could raise the same amount, or even more funds towards the trip. I have three answers for this:  

1. It builds community – This year’s trip will be undertaken by a group of ten students and two supervisors.  Through our time together and especially our time working hard to create these events, we are building cohesiveness in our group.  A sense of community, togetherness, with each member having an active and contributing role helps to describe group cohesiveness (Corey, Corey & Corey, 2010, Yalom & Leszc, 2005).  I am learning through our process of hard work that I can count on each person, I am seeing others’ many strengths, and I feel we are creating a bond that will hopefully serve us well as we embark on this adventure.

2. It brings awareness – These events also bring awareness to the community and create an environment for dialogue; about sex trafficking, about international work and cultural humility, about the ethics involved, about working with fair trade organizations and orphanages, about sending collective prayers and wishes for peace.  And in addition to the fund-raising events, we participate in many other community awareness events, such as the Longmont Street Festival, at which we talked about this project, and created prayer flags as a symbol for hopes and wishes.  NCAS-I members also spoke about their 2012 trip at a community event and spoke at a Naropa Board meeting to bring awareness within the Naropa Community.  We participated in CU’s Eye Contact event, which was specifically geared towards the issues of human trafficking.  We participated in Art Therapy workshops at BMOCA, a sex trafficking symposium with Transitions, spoke on KGNU, had a feature in Naropa Magazine and the Daily Camera, the Boulder Weekly and more!  We are sparking a dialogue and trying to bring a moment for discussion wherever we go.

3. It is FUN! Each event I participated in and even the work up to the event was FUN!  We laugh, we have exciting events, we create together, we eat great food, we express gratitude and it is super fun.  Rather than write anymore, I have included these pictures to express my sentiment.

References

Corey C., Corey J., & Corey M. (2010). Groups: Process and practice (8th ed.). Brooks/Cole: Belmont, CA.

Yalom, I & Leszcz, M. (2005). The Theory and practice of group psychotherapy. Basic Books: Cambridge, MA.

The Beauty Found in Trusting the Process

Team Dinosaurus Rex on their process oriented approach to the 48 Hour Painting Marathon:

“For our painting, Team Dinosaurus Rex took a heavily process oriented approach. This focus on process led to a theme emerging and evolving, but staying relatively the same throughout most of the painting marathon.  Some of the first marks included a sketchy image of a dinosaur.  That dinosaur changed and evolved throughout the marathon, but never disappeared.  Within the first six hours a tree emerged.  The tree went through many transformations throughout the 48 hours, finally serving as a space for our team of painters to represent their personal symbols in.  The final product is a collaborative piece that has captured snapshots of all the hands that have lovingly contributed to it.  With little to no direction our community of painters created a beautiful and intriguing image, an image that the viewers can look at for hours finding little secrets hidden within.  Our piece is evidence that beauty can be found in trusting the process.” 

AND…Last week to donate!

We’re approaching the last week of fundraising, so if you would still like to donate to the Painting Marathon and support the mission of the Naropa Community Art Studio-International, follow this link!  An anonymous donor will be matching all donations made through November 25, up to $1,000, so NOW IS THE TIME!

THANK YOU from the NCAS-I!

STAY TUNED for a Recap of the Marathon!

For now, we want you all to know that WE DID IT!  We had an AMAZING show of support leading up to and during the 48 Painting Marathon and have raised over $12,000 AND COUNTING!  The event resulted in three stunning, community created paintings and a studio filled with passion for an incredible mission.  We could not have done it without you…

 

With love and gratitude,

The Naropa Community Art Studio-International

Beautiful SIGHTS and SOUNDS coming from the Painting Marathon! 9 1/2 hours to go…

 

 

The NCAS-I teams and community support here at the Nalanda Art Studio are still going strong on this BEAUTIFUL Sunday morning…

Stay tuned for the Closing Ceremony tonight and the unveiling of the final paintings.  If you’re in the area, please join us from 7-9 p.m. tonight for a fun time and the grand finale!  

As always, THANK YOU for your support!  We’ve raised close to $11,000!  http://www.crowdrise.com/paintingmarathon2012

The 48-Hour Painting Marathon: It’s here! ARE YOU READY?

These little guys are!  They spent the afternoon at Nalanda Studio yesterday getting into the spirit…and YOU SHOULD, TOO!

Come join us tonight for the Opening Ceremony at 9:00 p.m.!  Our AMAZING MC for the opening and closing ceremony, Jenna Noah, will be helping us to get the weekend started.  We’re also looking forward to a fun line-up of entertainment to complement the 48 hours of painting…

Lonnie Lee Comer with Acoustic Bluegrass, The Drumantics with Drumming, Neptune’s Only Daughter with Groove Rock, Maryalma with Singing and Guitar, Sam Rae with Improvisational Cello Looping, Greg Hansen with Drumming, Paul Kimbiris, Ghost Dreams, and a special talk by local artist Sally Eckert

If you can’t make it to the event, please consider showing your support by making a donation.  We’ve raised $10,000 so far and could not have done it without your support:  http://www.crowdrise.com/paintingmarathon2012
THANK YOU from the NCAS-I!

Boulder’s Daily Camera Highlights the Naropa Community Art Studio

Boulder’s local newspaper highlights the role the Naropa Community Art Studio (NCAS) plays in both the local and international community.

“In this community art studio, students from Naropa, Boulder’s Buddhist-inspired university, act as mentors in what educators hope gives them the foundation to develop as socially engaged artists.”

The Naropa Community Art Studio-International (NCAS-I) grew out of this original model and both continue to flourish through community support.  Thank you, Boulder!

Read the FULL ARTICLE by Brittany Anas at the link below:

http://www.dailycamera.com/ci_21866835?source=rss

Painting Marathon 2012: Meet Team “Tutulicious Animalz”

Have you chosen a team to support for the NCAS-I Painting Marathon of 2012?  We’d like you to meet team Tutulicious Animalz!  They are one of three teams representing the Naropa Community Art Studio-International…and we’re pretty sure you’re going to LOVE them!

 

What does Team TUTULICIOUS ANIMALZ have to say?

“We are a fabulous team of tutu and tail wearing painters for Naropa’s 48 hour painting marathon.  Join us and have fun supporting a great cause!”

Who’s leading this fun-loving team to victory?  None other than the amazing Alexa Pinsker and Joanna Loftus!  Read about these NCAS-I rock stars here!

We know you want to DONATE to Team Tutulicious Animalz, so go ahead, click on the link below and be our guests!

http://www.crowdrise.com/tutuliciousanimalz

Like them on Facebook to stay up-to-date on the 2012 Painting Marathon happenings!

https://www.facebook.com/TutuliciousAnimalz

Please email ncas-i@naropa.edu with any questions.

Painting Marathon 2012: Meet Team “DINOSAURUS REX”

Have you chosen a team to support for the NCAS-I Painting Marathon of 2012?  We’d like you to meet team Dinosaurus Rex!  They are one of three teams representing the Naropa Community Art Studio-International…and we’re pretty sure you’re going to LOVE them!

Why is Team DINOSAURUS REX paining this year?

“Art is still basically the same as it has been since prehistoric times. It brings together man and the world. It lives through magic. – Keith Haring”

Who’s leading this fun-loving team to victory?  None other than the amazing James Huffman and Lisa Lamoreaux!  Read about these NCAS-I rock stars here!

We know you want to DONATE to Team Dinosaurus Rex, so go ahead, click on the link below and be our guests!

http://www.crowdrise.com/dinosaurusrex

Like them on Facebook to stay up-to-date on the 2012 Painting Marathon happenings!

https://www.facebook.com/48hrdino?fref=ts

Please email ncas-i@naropa.edu with any questions.

Restoration Movement Symposium: SUCCESS!

1st and 2nd Year Graduate Art Therapy Students, along with Sue Wallingford, at the Transitions Symposium in Denver, September 29, 2012 (Photo by Erin Shannon)

What an incredible opportunity it was for representatives from NCAS-I to attend the Restoration Movement Symposium hosted by Transitions in Denver last weekend.  We learned about the urgency in bringing awareness to the issue of sex-trafficking, both here in Colorado and globally.  We learned that trauma-informed care is imperative when working toward rehabilitation and reintegration for survivors of sex-trafficking.  What’s more, we know that quality restoration care takes time, is worth doing well, and cannot be done alone.  Collaboration, a founding principle of NCAS-I, is key.

As we look to the future, we are very excited about the possibility of forging new partnerships with organizations in Cambodia, maintaining NCAS-I’s mission to actively engage with social justice organizations like Chab Dai, Transitions, and Polaris Project.

Moving forward, we find inspiration in James Pond’s words when asked, “How do you find hope with such difficult work?” The co-founder of Transitions responded, “It is the small successes that matter – when you actually have a girl reintegrate back into society without being re-trafficked, re-exploited or voluntarily engaging in prostitution.”  Follow James and Athena Pond and The Restoration Movement here!

Thank you to Sgt. Daniel Steele, Tovah Means, Stacia Freeman, Katherine Chon, Helen Sworn, and James and Athena Pond!

P.S. We walked away from the Symposium with a wealth of knowledge and look forward to sharing more with you as we continue our journey!  Thank you all for your support and please stay tuned!