Youth in The Next Door’s Independent Living Program and Oregon Trail Transitional Housing program were treated to an afternoon painting party at The Next Door’s office in The Dalles. Joy Kloman, owner of Joy’s Art Studio in Hood River, led the group on Sept. 25.
Participants had little or no painting experience and were excited — but a little nervous — about the blank canvas in front of them. But under the guidance of Kloman, everyone created a depiction of a Koi fish in a pond and went home with something beautiful to hang on their wall, said Justine Ziegler, Next Door development officer.
The painting party was part of a series called the Glo & Joy Art Project that is being offered to The Next Door’s program participants.
Gloria Hammer, project creator, partners with Kloman and The Next Door to bring art, creativity, inspiration, and empowerment to those who may otherwise not have such experiences, said Ziegler.
Hammer, who has a background in child welfare, has spearheaded the effort to immerse more children, teens, and families in the creative experience of painting, shown to develop positive skills such as persistence, cooperation, creative thinking, problem solving, motivation, and self-confidence.
For more information about Glo & Joy Art Project, contact Ziegler at The Next Door at 541-436-0304.