Drawn To Help
In the fall of 2014, I began taking free cartoon drawing classes
to pediatric patients in hospitals and at camps. In a very short
time demand for these programs increased dramatically, and
other cartoonists and illustrators started asking how they could
do something similar in their own areas.
That's how "Drawn To Help" evolved into something really
special that we're taking nationwide. “Drawn To Help" is a
sponsored project of Fractured Atlas, a non-profit arts service
organization. Fractured Atlas will receive grants for the
charitable purposes of “Drawn To Help", provide oversight to
ensure that grant funds are used in accordance with grant
agreements, and provide reports as required by the grantor.
Contributions for the charitable purposes of “Drawn To Help"
must be made payable to Fractured Atlas and are tax deductible
to the extent permitted by law.
We do group activities for those who can particpate, and bedside
visits for children who cannot leave their rooms.
Amazing things have happened as a result of these programs.
Watching a child who is going through chemo and radiation treatments skip down the
hallway, clutching her art supplies to her chest and singing "I get to draw! I get to draw!"
is one of the most fulfilling feelings in the world.
Parents and medical staff have told us that during our visits, they've seen patients laugh
and smile for the first time in weeks. A mother wrote to tell us that her son took his free
art supplies home with him after a long day of testing and treatment, and fell asleep on
the couch smiling that night....still drawing as he drifted off into Slumberland.
We worked with a young man who was awaiting a double transplant. His dream is to
become a cartoonist when he grows up. He had received some news that had been hard
for him to deal with, and was growing despondent. His medical team was concerned that
he was giving up.
They asked for special visits just for him, and for us to do anything we could to cheer him
Cartoonists from all over the country began sending him encouraging notes, inspiring
books, original drawings and pencil sketches....all personally signed to him. Those gifts
not only inspired him to keep fighting, but they also served as great learning tools that
will help him chase his dreams as he gets older.
His progress was dramatic. Within two weeks of our initial visit, he was able to move out
of his isolation room and into to a much more comfortable setting. He recently received
his transplants, and is now back at home with his family!
Of course I credit most of his progress to his doctors and nurses, but I'd like to think that
the cartooning program definitely played a role in his turnaround. That's why we want
to spread the "Drawn To Help" programs as far and wide as possible. We'd like to continue
touching young lives and encouraging children to chase their dreams.
Early grants from both The Pollination Project and The Ella Lyman Cabot Trust helped
the cartooning programs begin, and they provided free art supplies to every child we
visited. They enabled us to reach out to over 2,000 children already, and we've
given away thousands of dollars worth of pencils, drawing pads, colored pencils and
crayons. Individual gifts have also played a big role in this endeavor, and have made it
possible to begin expanding this program's reach.
Art heals. It provides comfort and laughter. We've seen it with our own eyes.
If you'd like to play a part in this fantastic effort, click on the link below and see how
you can contribute! Thank you. Together, we can bring smiles to the faces of thousands
and thousands of young people going through extremely rough times.