Sharing the power of art, one crayon box at a time, a young Danbury artist is helping children learn how to deal with difficult situations. Chelsea Phaire is donating art kits to kids in Connecticut, and across the country.
If you ask the 10-year-old what makes art so special, she’s got the answer.
“It’s like a healing concoction for me,” said Phaire. “When I can’t communicate, I can always do it through art.”
That’s why she’s on a mission to spread the magic of markers and the power of colored pencils to other children. Through “Chelsea’s Charity,” she donates art kits to kids. It’s a bright idea that came one Christmas morning.
“Last Christmas, I received a very expensive art kit, and I felt very happy,” said Phaire. “And the happiness I felt that day, I felt everyone should have that.”
To help uplift other kids, she sent dozens of kits to El Paso after the shooting there earlier this year.
“It was a very traumatic experience, so I thought maybe if I give the kids art kits – we made a lot of them – I thought it would bring them happiness during a time of great despair,” she said.
On Monday afternoon, she carted 30 art kits to Central Connecticut State’s Literary Center where she showed elementary school children how to become artists. The children are part of the school’s free tutoring program, and Chelsea’s lesson is a welcome addition.
“If I look at what’s happened to art and music in public schools, particularly our impoverished communities and our communities of color, it is vastly disappearing and being replaced by test prep,” said Dr. Jesse Turner, Director of CCSU’s Literary Center.
He said Chelsea is not only encouraging art, but also big dreams.
“They’re like, ‘whoa here’s another little kid doing something!’”
So far, Chelsea’s Charity has donated more than 500 kits to kids in shelters and at schools, and she has another big project in mind.
“I want to deliver to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital because I think a lot of kids that are in the hospital, going through cancer, they just need a little happiness,” she said.
The art kits for Monday’s class were donated by the Ana Grace Project. Up next Chelsea is delivering art kits to adults. Next week, she’ll donate the kits to veterans in Danbury.
You can learn more about Chelsea’s artistic efforts on her website here.