Up for Auction
Presentation on Lead Poisoning in New Orleans featuring Debra Campbell from A Community Voice, Dr. Adrienne Katner from Louisiana State University – Health Sciences Center, and Dr. Howard Meilke from Tulane University.
Art Exhibit on Lead Poisoning from Students at Arise Academy
Workshops on Lead Poisoning
- Presentation at Justice & Beyond Monday October 2nd 4:45pm at Christian Unity 1700 Conti in NOLA
- Healthy Housing & Community Fair Saturday October 7th 10am to 2pm at Fair Grinds Coffeehouse 2221 St. Claude Avenue Resources, Mental Health Services, Housing Programs, & Fair Trade Coffee without the Toxins
- Lake Charles Housing & Community Fair Saturday October 28th, 10am to 1pm at Allen P August Multi Purpose Center 2001 Moeling Street in Lake Charles
New Orleans area students find therapy through art
18th April 2017 ·
By Deja Dennis
Students from Arise Academy Charter School set out to heal the divide in their community with their artwork, signifying the start of National Crime Victims’ Rights Week.
The Healing Together New Orleans Art Exhibit was held at the New Orleans Healing Center on St. Claude Avenue on April 3. The Southern United Neighborhoods non-profit, also called SUN, organized the event to give middle school students the opportunity to express themselves through art, and have their work on display for the community.
Arise Academy students display their work for the Healing Together New Orleans Art Exhibit to coincide with National Crime Victim’s Rights Week.
SUN works with low-income families in the neighborhoods surrounding the Healing Center to find affordable housing and resources. Marie Hurt, the director of SUN, said the art exhibit was designed to encourage middle school students to express their feelings on crime and how communities can heal together. She believes it benefits the surrounding community when they begin to see how issues like crime and public safety affects children.
“A lot of the time, people don’t talk to the kids,” Hurt said emphasizing the importance of hearing from young people in the community.
Several local organizations joined with SUN in the event including Justice and Beyond, Affordable Healing Arts, Groundwork New Orleans, Here to Help Counseling, Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Office, A Community Voice, and a few others.
Beth Butler, an organizer for A Community Voice, said she contacted Arise Academy to get the students involved with Crime Victims’ Rights Week. Prior to the event, she gave the art students the topics “healing together” and “peace” to create pieces for the display.
“It’s hard for kids to communicate their experiences,” Butler said. This is how she knew that it would be best for them to speak through their artwork. She explained how it was also like therapy for the students.
“Art heals,” Butler said. She believes that children are impacted by crime greatly and the exhibit is a great way to grow art therapy. Her mission was to help students express themselves through art and for the community to see what they produced.
The person responsible for relaying the assignment to the students was Nicole Higgins, an art teacher at the academy.
“It was difficult at first,” Higgins said, “because many of the students had strong ideas, but were unsure.” Higgins counseled the students to help them gain a clear vision for their work. She said that everyone went in different directions, which resulted in very unique ideas. The kids created images depicting what it means to belong to their community and how to bring about peace.
“The kids were invested in this topic,” Higgins explained, “It really pushed them to be more creative.”
Among the young artists were Kennedi Smith, and Archanna Byrd, both 14. “I wanted people to see that we need peace in New Orleans,” Smith said about her project.
“My art shows healing overtime and how to move forward,” Byrd explained. She also said that the crime victims are not alone and that even the offenders can heal and be forgiven.
Sgt. Stephanie Minto-Gibson from the Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Office, who is part of the Crime Victims Reparations Program assisting victims of all crimes, said the event highlighted the importance of victims’ rights. Last year 338 victims were helped through the crime victims program, she said. The program assists with medical and funeral expenses, as well as relocation. Minto-Gibson said she hoped the art exhibit would bring about more awareness of the program within the community. Residents can stop by the Healing Center, see the artwork, and learn about the many resources.
The New Orleans Healing Center was excited to have the students’ artwork on display. “The artwork offered the Healing Center visual representation of the youth and their feelings on healing the community,” said Brandon Curran, the event coordinator. The Healing Center offers a wide range of services including job training, physical therapy, mental health facilities, and re-entry for convicted felons as a way to help victims of crime.
“We are holistic in the way we heal,” Curran said, meaning that the community should prosper as a whole leaving no one out including the young people.
The students’ artwork will be on display in the Healing Center until the end of April. The organizers and the Healing Center hope to get more schools involved next year.
This article originally published in the April 17, 2017 print edition of The Louisiana Weekly newspaper.
Middle School students in Nicole Higgins’ art class are hard at work creating art for the Healing Together New Orleans Project that will be featured at the Healing Center on St. Claude Avenue for the month of April. This exhibit will open on Monday April 3rd at 1pm to kickoff National Crime Victims’ Rights Week April 2nd-8th, a national event to promote public awareness of crime victims’ rights and services for victims of all types of crime. The Healing Together New Orleans Art Exhibit and Community Resource Center will be featured at the Healing Center on St. Claude Avenue for the entire month of April.
Monday, April 3rd
New Orleans Healing Center
2372 St. Claude Avenue
This exhibit is being hosted by Southern United Neighborhoods (SUN), a nonprofit that works with low income families, and will feature art by community leaders and students from Arise Academy, as well as from victims of crime. Residents are invited to come out to the exhibit to see the great community artworks that embody this year’s NCVRW theme of Strength, Resilience, and Justice. Resources for crime victims and their families will also be available for community members.
The New Orleans Healing Center incorporates over 25 various privately-run businesses and organizations (silos) to help holistically heal the surrounding neighborhoods. These silos include; AHA (Affordable Healing Arts, Magnolia Physical Therapy, ASI Credit Union, New Orleans Food Coop, Crouch Law, Island of Salvation Botanica, Café Istanbul and many others. The New Orleans Healing Center is excited to link these survivors with National Crime Victims’ Rights Week.
Community leaders, Sheriff Marlin Gusman, and organizations that provide services for crime victims and their families, as well as reentry programs for recently incarcerated will also be on hand to provide information about their services.
By increasing the general public’s awareness of crime victims’ and survivors’ rights and available resources, SUN is providing a critical public service to the community. According to Steve Derene, Executive Director of the National Association of VOCA Assistance Administrators, which administers the National Crime Victims’ Rights Week Community Awareness Project, “It is critically important that crime survivors in New Orleans know that help and hope are available to them.”
This project is supported by a National Crime Victims’ Rights Week Community Awareness Project subgrant awarded by the National Association of VOCA Assistance Administrators under a Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) grant from the Office for Victims of Crime, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice.
Month-Long National Crime Victims’ Rights visual and literary art exhibit at Fair Grinds Coffeehouse at 2221 St. Claude Avenue, New Orleans, LA that will be called “Healing Together New Orleans: Strength, Resilience and Justice” and opens on April 3rd and focuses on victimization and the healing and recovery process.
Victims of crime, along with their family members & loved ones are encouraged to either participate in the submission of art or photography of or concerning something memorable about a loved one, survivors of crime and artists who are concerned about crime are also encouraged to submit art pieces to this exhibit.
Works can be submitted that are virtual or literacy, to encourage all types of expression.
Deadline for Inclusion in Exhibit Book will be March 27th
Artwork can be listed anonymously if desired.
Please email email@example.com with project idea and reserve exhibit space.
Or simply fill out the content form below.
This project is supported by a National Crime Victims’ Right Week Community Awareness Project subgrant awarded by the National Association of VOCA Assistance Administrators under a Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) grant from the Office for Victims of Crime, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice.
Healing Together New Orleans is a Project of Southern United Neighborhoods
Join our community conversation!
Date: Tuesday December 20th
Time: 1pm or 6pm
If you are interested in joining the group discussion, please contact 504-941-2852. Space is limited so please call if interested.
We invite you to participate in a community conversation about lead exposure in children. We are looking for people who are:
- Adults over the age of 18
- Community members residing in areas at high risk for lead exposure
- Parents of children who have been affected by lead or exposed to lead
- Interested in being part of a national conversation about ways to prevent children from being exposed to lead and to address the needs of children who have been affected by lead
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The focus groups will be held by the Health Impact Project, a collaboration of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The Pew Charitable Trusts. The Health Impact Project is working on a research study to help prevent children from coming into contact with lead and to support children who have already been exposed to lead.
Participation in the group discussion is completely voluntary. The focus group is planned for Tuesday, December 20th and should take about 90 minutes. All participants will receive a $25 gift card.
If you are interested in joining the group discussion, please 504-941-2852.