Every child is an artist - Pablo Picasso
The Hands of Action Uganda Art Project moved into high gear last week, signing up more than 600 children from four participating schools and orphanages in the Bududa district of eastern Uganda.
They include Hands of Action Uganda, Lunganga Primary School, Bukari Primary School and African Children in Need.
The young artists have until October 28th to compose their masterpieces representing scenes from everyday life in rural Uganda.
Our local director for the project, Mukhobeh Moses Khaukha, along with a special panel of judges, then face the awesome task of selecting the best 40 or 50 pieces for inclusion in an online art gallery and auction site.
Hands of Action volunteers will then carefully package the paintings for shipment to Ridealist in Hong Kong where they will be scanned and put online, and hopefully, displayed in a physical location.
Moses described the sense of excitement that is gripping the youngsters.
"The children are happy that their work will be seen overseas, and that there is an opportunity to create friendships with children from other countries.
"Most of the children participating in the Hands of Action Art Project are needy orphans
who cannot afford scholastic materials, clothes and so on.
"One 13-year old boy, James, told me that he is looking forward to having books and new Christmas clothes because of the project."
The project was originally inspired by the work of a young Kenyan artist, Martin Thuku.
This talented young man grew up in the Kandara Children's home in Nairobi after the tragic loss of his parents.
He now uses his art not only to help fund his own education, but also to support the programmes of a local non-profit organisation, VisionAfrica.
His art is an inspiration and reaffirmation that whatever hardships we have endured, we are still the artists of our own destiny.
"The children, teachers and parents are very excited by this project, which enables the artists to express their feelings on paper," Moses said.
"This being the first project of its kind, thousands of children wanted to participate when they heard about it.
"The project has required thorough preparation to help the children and teachers understand its concepts. We are very grateful to the teachers and volunteers for working so tirelessly to make sure this project is well done."
The project was made possible by an initial donation from Mr. Simon P'ng of Malaysia to cover the costs of the materials.
The Hands of Action Uganda Art Project now needs further funding or sponsorship in kind to cover the expense of high quality scanning, picture frames, and promotion of a physical exhibition of the paintings in Hong Kong.
It is our ultimate ambition to send this exhibition "on the road" where people from around the world may join together to marvel at, and discuss the treasures that are being created.
All funds raised from the online and physical exhibitions, auction of the prints etc, will used to promote the programmes of the participating schools and orphanages in Uganda.
If you would like to join us, please contact Ridealist through the links on this page or on Facebook. You can also keep up to date with developments by following us on twitter @chrisgelken
Claire George, Ridealist Project Manager, Hands of Action Art Project
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