In May of 2020, we banded our resources together in a simple act of love and support for the children at the Matamoros refugee camp on the US/Mexico border. They were seeking a safe haven in the US, but are now stranded in a sprawling tent camp due to our inhumane immigration policy.
In collaboration with Bay Area Border Relief, we raised $1,200.00 to purchase and send the children:
- 600 basic sketch journals (1 per child)
- 2,432 pipsqueaks markers (4 per child)
- A list of 10 project prompts for marker and paper
The project prompts were planned by myself and my mother, also an art teacher. We intentionally chose interdisciplinary projects that would:
- Engage a wide range of ages.
- Intersect with core academic subject skills such as geometry and writing.
- Encourage expression and processing of emotions.
- Provide opportunity for open ended play and exploration.
- Be portable and self directed.
The therapeutic and interdisciplinary nature of art has the power to bring children at the refugee camp educational enrichment, a way to process and express emotions, and a much needed outlet for play
You’ll find the printable project prompts, in English and Spanish, below. They would make a great resource for teachers facilitating art projects with limited materials, parents traveling with children, or simply for parents and caregivers to provide their reading aged artists a list of self directed art prompts.
I’m honored that my community of parents, artists and teachers were inspired to put our resources together to send a message of love and support to the children and families at Matamoros refugee camp who are battling this pandemic while struggling to seek asylum in our country.
There are many other ways to get involved with the humanitarian work being done by Bay Area Border Relief. You can donate masks , read and share the letters being written by children and parents as part of the Querida America project,purchase masks for yourself and loved ones with the proceeds going to the organization , and give a direct donation to the organization .
Thank you to everyone who participated in this project to increase access to visual art, to Mother’s Quest Podcast Episode 72 for inspiring my mother, son and I to coordinate this effort, and to Bay Area Border Relief for being our willing collaborators and the good work they are doing in this world.