Healing and Connecting through Creating
On Wednesday mornings for Food in the Fort, our homeless friends come out of the cold - or the heat - depending on the season. They come in to be fed, to receive provisions for the next few weeks, and to have fellowship. Not only are their physical needs met; they are brought into a community. Sometimes silent, sometimes joking, always grateful, they are merged - albeit slowly - back into mainstream society.
The art class is another way that we seek to bring these friends into community through common interests. In a casual setting, on Thursday afternoons, they sit down, soak in the music, and express themselves artistically or through the written word. Most of them begin with emphatically denying that they possess any talent. They then proceed to produce beautiful works of art, whether it is poetry, colored pencil, finger-paint, tie-dye, or crayon; they leave with a masterpiece and, usually, a new friend.
It is in this place - where no expectations are placed on them, where they are always welcome, and where they are left alone to create - that marvelous miracles are worked. In a truly organic fashion, they have the opportunity to experience the satisfaction in creating and the healing that comes through artistic expression and appreciation.