At Printfresh, we are deeply committed to connecting with arts and education organizations in the area that help cultivate creativity. Each quarter we pledge a percentage of our sales to art and/or youth organizations in need to support this mission. This quarter our selected partner is the Picasso Project. Every quarter we partner with a community program and donate 5% of online sales to their organization.
The Public Citizens for Children & Youth (PCCY) launched the Picasso Project in 2003 in response to the lack of funding for arts in Philly schools. For the past 15 years, they have encouraged studies in the arts by awarding grants to public schools in the greater Philadelphia area. They consider themselves a program that combines "art advocacy and support”. Since its initiation in 2003, they have helped fund 163 school-based art projects, facilitate 243 art and community-based school partnerships, and have inspired 40,750 students to continue studying the arts.
Tim Gibbon currently serves as the Project Director. Tim is a graduate of Temple University with a master’s degree in Art Education and a Certificate in the Community Arts Practices. He combines his experience working with youth support programs around the city with his skills obtained while being involved with numerous socially engaged arts programs to help provide leadership to the organization's many committee members. The Picasso Project Committee members serve as volunteer liaisons at project schools, providing technical assistance and support. They help with outreach, coordination, and advocacy to grantee schools and work to continue the impact of school projects.
The Picasso Project stands by their strong claim that art can create a life-long love of learning that leads to academic success. Teachers have reported students involved with the program also have shown improvement in cooperation and behavior skills, improved grades, and a higher rate of college attendance in addition to gaining further interest in the arts as some of the benefits from the impact of their program.
We'd love to hear from you, leave a comment below, and for more information about our community partners read these features: Interview with Art Sphere Inc., Executive Director Kristen Groenveld and Printfresh x Philly Paper Jam.