Youth in foster care are not often exposed to, or invited to express themselves through art. Hoping to provide a creative outlet for the youth we serve, FFCR organized a gathering at The Clutch Bar that centered around art, food, and music when schools were closed. Youth, mentors, and potential caregivers were able to connect and build positive memories. The day was made possible by grant funds from the Coral Gables Community Foundation and in-kind contributions.
Local artist Alvin Surreal, who was inspired by the work the PRT Program does, offered to donate his time and talent. Each person painted their own masterpiece, some following the artist’s directions and others venturing on their own creative path. The art event was far more impactful than we had initially anticipated. The seven young men/PRT Program participants in attendance had crossed paths with at least one other youth at one point while in the foster care system, and they enjoyed reconnecting. Additionally, the youth were able to share this unique art experience with their Guardians ad Litem, mentors, and other PRT team members, who represent various community organizations. The event facilitated many important connections which directly resulted in additional support and services for youth served by the PRT Program. All participants – youth and adults alike – enjoyed good conversation, reestablishing old relationships, and a sense of accomplishment.