Although this story is mentioned briefly in the newsletter for WAG, I wanted to flesh out the details and share a little more of the story of the charitable side of the Windward Artists Guild. For years now, WAG has been donating grants to education in the community in the arts. Each year, windward Oahu teachers can apply to receive grants to help buy art supplies for the classroom to lighten the burden on the art teachers in our community. WAG also helps with the Total Life Recovery Program in the Women’s Community Correctional Center by providing a grant to Cynthia Schubert Richmond, a member of WAG and the volunteer art teacher in charge of the art class for WCCC. In teaching the ladies at the facility, she hopes they will learn to use artistic expression as a coping mechanism with the challenges they face.
I asked Cynthia to write a little bit about the program, and this is what she wrote, “Ruth Pistor, who was a member of WAG and a signature member of the Hawaii Watercolor Society started teaching there about eleven years ago. Unfortunately, she passed away at 91 a little over two years ago. That’s when I came into the picture. Ruth and I were friends from church and after she passed away, she left a huge gap in our hearts and in the prison ministries. That’s when I decided to talk with Chaplain Tammy from TLR who told me that they would love to have me take over. All volunteers have to go through an eight hour training session at the Dillingham correctional facility. So after doing that and turning in letters of recommendation, I began teaching one day a week, an hour and a half each time. I can’t say enough about how this ministry helps both the women and the teachers. I feel blessed by the experience of being with women who are free just by knowing God even though they are in prison. I teach them about art. They teach me about life. Doesn’t seem like a fair trade but that’s how it is! 🙂
WAG has generously given our class $250 in 2013 and increased it to $500 in 2014! TLR and I are indebted to this financial support. If anyone would like to donate art supplies, they can email me.” Cynthia’s email is c_schubertrichmond (at) hotmail.com. Please note that I always include emails written in a format to avoid the automatic SPAM robots, so simply replace the (at) with @ and take out the spaces. For more information about the Total Life Recovery Program, please visit http://totalliferecovery.org/programs.html