Mariana first came to the Newberry Arts Center after winning a weeklong scholarship to summer art camp from her elementary school. Mariana has always been an artistic child, but it has not always been easy for her to fit in. She is bigger and taller than most kids her age and so everyone always assumes she is older than she really is. In addition, Mariana suffers from anxiety and depression, so it is hard for her to stay focused. That week at summer art camp proved to be exactly what she needed. Not only was it enriching, as she was able to dabble in different art mediums, but she also enjoyed the comradery with the other students.
That experience left her wanting more so her mother asked about the workshops in clay offered at the center. Those workshops are usually for adults and Mariana was twelve at the time. So, the question was whether she would be mature enough to fit in with the adults. After some consideration it was decided that she would be allowed to give it a try. The clay workshop happened to be a perfect fit for Mariana. The small group setting allowed her one-on-one time with the instructor and if you saw her work, you would not be able to tell it was made by a twelve-year-old. Her Mother commented that besides clay workshops being entertaining for Mariana they have also became “a therapeutic tool in dealing with her anxiety.” Mariana also commented, “having my hand in clay makes me feel calm and I like that I can express myself through it.” She also said the teachers at the Arts Center help her feel at home. “Mrs. Debie was really funny, she made me see what I am capable of, she made the class more fun!”
Mariana plans to continue learning and improving her art through classes offered at the Arts Center. Through your generosity you can enrich the lives of underserved children in our community like Mariana.