The South Cariboo Arts and Culture Society donated $500 each to Peter Skene Ogden Secondary Schools (PSO) and 100 Mile House Elementary to support their arts programs.
Barb Brown, volunteer gallery manager at the Parkside Art Gallery, said they used to give individual PSO scholarships, but that was after Penny Reid, the elementary Native support worker, brought the celebration of native art from elementary schools to the gallery as the board decided it was time to help out with a larger program.
The gallery has had a few primary school exhibits. Last year marked the first time the Aboriginal program was presented at the gallery. They tried once before, but COVID-19 intervened.
“The students did all this amazing work and we had it in the gallery for a while and then the board decided it was time to start helping the younger ones,” she said.
This is the third year that PSO has received a donation and the first year for 100 Mile Elementary.
Lianne Heales, a visual arts teacher at PSO, said she and her students have curated exhibitions at the gallery for the past three years.
The donation is for art supplies, as costs have increased significantly since COVID-19, she said.
For many high school students, this is the first time they’ve started doing things like painting, scratching, and a bit of sculpting with plaster.
“Even today there was a time when I had a kid who took stuff to another room to work on when he was done with his work and he came running back to my class at the end of the day. day and he said ‘I’ve never tried this before, always wanted to try it’ and he was so proud of his work It was working in ink and it’s just this opportunity to try new things that ‘They wouldn’t normally have that’s what the extra funding does for them,’ Heales said.
Reid said she doesn’t yet know how to use the gift. Maybe also for refueling.
“I don’t know exactly where this leads yet. We can have a presenter, I don’t know,” she said. “We are very grateful.”
READ MORE: Students share Indigenous art at Parkside Gallery
Brown said the connection between schools and galleries is an inspiration to students. Someone cares enough about them to support them in what they want to do and it’s just inspiring for them to be supported in the community.
“I’m glad we can (recognize them),” Brown said. “I’m really happy that the council is in a position where we can afford to give back to the community and to young people. One of my favorite things in 10 years as a director. I love it when I have students in the gallery,” she said. “My heart just sings.”
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