The Trends Charitable Fund has awarded a $25,000 grant for general operations to support programs for children at Free Arts For Abused Children of Arizona. Free Arts is the first arts organization to receive a Trends Charitable Fund grant.
“This generous grant from the Trends Charitable Fund will allow Free Arts to continue providing unique and innovative programs using the creative arts to help heal homeless and abused children who have experienced family trauma, homelessness and violence,” says Alicia Sutton Campbell, Free Arts executive director. “We simply cannot do what we do without the incredibly thoughtful support of our community through organizations like the Trends Charitable Fund. We are deeply grateful.”
Free Arts served 7,340 abused and homeless children in 2015 through partnerships with 35 social service agencies at more than 100 sites across Maricopa County and more than 800 volunteers. Locations include domestic violence and homeless shelters, foster care group homes and residential treatment centers. Services are provided at no cost to the partnering agencies.
Avery, a Free Arts participant at age 15, wrote in a letter of support that “living in a group home, you don’t really get to express your feelings. Growing up in that environment was all about surviving and suppressing my thoughts and emotions. . . In Free Arts’ programs I actually had an outlet to express myself and explore my interests.
“What I ended up loving the most about Free Arts was the community,” Avery wrote. “It’s full of adults that actually care about making the world a better place and taught me the power of what a community truly is.”
Now 18, Avery’s goal is to “study dance and choreography with a potential of exploring DJing and audio engineering.”
“Avery’s story is just one of hundreds that reflect the outcomes our programs can have on children struggling to address and overcome their past traumatic experiences,” Campbell says.
PHOTOS COURTESY FREE ARTS FOR ABUSED CHILDREN OF ARIZONA