Rockwall Art League sponsors ‘ArtReach’ for mentally, emotionally, physically challenged

Groundbreaking today for new 6000 sq ft MHMR facility

(ROCKWALL-February 7, 2013) In the spring of 2012, the Rockwall Art League began an innovative program in Rockwall County.  The art league organized eight volunteers with two lead instructors to begin a weekly program of teaching art to the mentally, emotionally and physically challenged.

The site for the instruction was to be the MHMR Regional Lakes Center in Royse City. The mission statement of MHMR is “to enhance the mental health and intellectual development of people in our community.”

Since the inception of the weekly art outreach program, starting with five students and eight volunteers, there are now have eight students  and 16 volunteers who say it is such a wonderful and rewarding experience.  A calendar is drawn up for the art league members to sign up for the dates that work best for them and each week one of the three volunteers prepares the art lesson as the lead instructor. There are several talented, dedicated and caring members involved with the program.

The students have been exposed to working with acrylic paint, watercolor paint, colored pencils, watercolor pencils, sketching, drawing, resist painting, creating reflections and shadows, realistic and abstract forms, creative representation, craft projects such as gourd painting, collage, and personal expression through art.  The objective is to introduce them to all types of art forms and art creativity that will foster self-expression, understanding and imagination.  They are encouraged to explore and express themselves through their interpretation and creations with minimal interference or guidance from the instructors for the weekly lesson.

The Rockwall Art League is a member of the North Texas Art Therapy Association, Rockwall Area Chamber of Commerce and the Rockwall Old Town Shoppes. The support of Amica, the Rockwall Rotary and the Rockwall Women’s League has helped to make this program possible because  all of the art supplies are provided by the Rockwall Art League.

Why is art important?

Art encourages thought, imagination and creativity.

Art inspires and communicates.

Art opens minds, opens hearts and opens doors.

Art permeates our lives through expression and experiences.

Imagine your life without art.  Imagine a community without art.

 Submitted by Betty Hoagland.

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