Wheatley art students participate in the Memory Project

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Wheatley art students participate in the Memory Project
Art students at The Wheatley School created portraits of Puerto Rican children as part of the Memory Project. (Photo courtesy of the East Williston Union Free School District)

Art students at The Wheatley School have joined the Memory Project, a charitable nonprofit organization that invites art teachers and their students to create and donate portraits to youth who have faced substantial challenges.

The project encourages art students to practice kindness and global awareness while enhancing their portraiture skills. Since the Memory Project began in 2004, more than 100,000 American art students have created portraits for children in forty-four different countries.

In Puerto Rico, hurricanes Irma and Maria unleashed total destruction and devastation in September 2017. Still now, many Puerto Rican children are facing difficulties, from lack of basic necessities to mental and emotional distress.

After hearing about what some of the children of Puerto Rico were going through, art students in Nicole Girgenti’s class decided to participate in the Memory Project, as part of their Advanced Portfolio class project. They created portraits for the children to help provide special new keepsakes after all that was lost.

In order to complete the project, the students received photos of the Puerto Rican children and then worked in their art classroom to create the portraits. Now that the portraits are finished, the Memory Project will be delivering the portraits to the children.

In total, Wheatley art students made portraits for eight children in Puerto Rico.

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