Thursday, November 15, 2012

Art CAN...

Art can move people to take action. 
Art can transform lives. Art can heal. 
Art can be a tool to express ideas, 
feelings and beauty.

Did you notice the house in the window coming in to The Ware Center this evening?  This art installation designed and created by Kevin Lehman and Girls On The Run(GOTR) is part of my plan to raise awareness about children experiencing homelessness in Lancaster County. 

I won a contest sponsored by O, The Oprah Magazine and Crocs.  I am one of one-hundred women across the nation whose 500 word proposal was selected.  I won!! I won 100 pairs of Crocs shoes to make a difference in my community.  It didn’t take me long to figure out Lancaster won!  This giving, caring community won an opportunity to perhaps capture national attention. My proposal to the O Team was simple. Gather 100 women to decorate, paint, enhance a pair of Crocs, use them as a focal point in an art installation in prominent window in our city.  These shoes would then be given to my charity of choice, Lancaster Creative Factory. They will in turn give Crocs to children in our community experiencing 

Lancaster Creative Factory (LCF) is my charity of choice because of its mission  to cultivate creativity through education in the visual arts and crafts.  Located on So. Prince in the city, Kevin Lehman’s LCF provides affordable and obtainable programs including art classes, workshops and community projects.  A portion of the proceeds generated from programs provides scholarships and community outreach to organizations and individuals that demonstrate need. 

Over 100 young women of Lancaster GOTR partnered with LCF’s volunteers and me on October 27th for Create O’Crocs Day. Our goal was to paint and decorate 100 pairs of Crocs.  GOTR is a life-changing, character development program for girls in 3rd through 8th grade.  Their mission is to inspire girls to be joyful, healthy and confident using a fun, experience-based curriculum which creatively integrates running.  The photos you are seeing were taken by Jean Sharf and Carrie Husted during our project launch.  Thank you Girls On The Run, you rock. 

During my project planning I met with community service organizations and shelters to learn about homelessness in Lancaster County.  It just happened our O’Crocs Window of Awareness found a home here at The Ware Center thanks to Harvey Owen’s generosity.  It just happened to open November 2nd, during the same month as the Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Benefit Concert sponsored by the Lancaster County Coalition to End Homelessness. The Coalition kindly invited me to share this happy coincidence with you this evening. My mission to raise awareness about homelessness and their mission to END homelessness in our community coincided… just happened!  Thank you Mike Folley and all of the members of the Coalition and members of our community who are working to serve people in crisis. Thank you Oprah, Crocs, LCF Board and volunteers, GOTR, The Ware Center and Lancaster County residents who make Lancaster a generous and caring place to live.  

You can help me with my project by joining The Sole Challenge, contact me at

Remember your charity of choice on November 30 through Lancaster Community Foundations’ Extra Ordinary Give. Go online that day to their web site and give generously to support your community.

“You may not think you can reach it. Climb anyway.  You may not think you’ll be 
heard.  Speak anyway.  You may not think you can change things.  Try anyway.” 
-Maya Angelou 

Art inspires. Thank you.


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