Huntington High School’s Art Honor Society has gone international with a cool project that involved submitting 14 gorgeous portraits for Rohingya refugee children in Bangladesh.
Huntington Art Honor Society members teamed up with the Memory Project, a charitable non-profit organization that encourages art teachers and their students to develop and donate portraits to youth around the world “who have faced substantial challenges, such as violence, disasters, extreme poverty, neglect and loss of parents,” states the group’s website.
“We want the portraits to help the children feel valued and important, to know that many people care about their well-being, and to act as meaningful pieces of personal history in the future,” according to the organization. “For the art students, we want this to be an opportunity to creatively practice kindness and global awareness.”
The Memory Project is an initiative that the Huntington High School teenagers will never forget. “This is definitely my favorite project we do,” said Jane Judson, the Art Honor Society’s faculty advisor. “I love that it shows our students the impact their artwork can have globally!”
Huntington’s Art Honor Society chapter is led by President Andy Ulloa, Vice President Shaye O’Beirne, Corresponding Secretary Francesca Greco, Recording Secretary Josie Fasolino and Treasurer Irtana Deslouches.
“The Memory Project invites young artists around the world to create portraits as special gifts to children facing challenges,” Mr. Ulloa said. “We continue to do it every year because it brings the love of art and helping others in need together.”
The Memory Project organization provided the Huntington Art Honor Society with color prints and digital copies of photos of children and teens from the Bangladesh refugee camp. Portraits were then created by the Huntington teenagers.
Participating Art Honor Society members included Aniyah Toro, Lauren LoScalzo, Bianca Lella, Natalie Furman, Irtana Deslouches, Niurca Chabla Leon, Yasmin Khilji-Neal, Shyann Maragh, Julia Segal, Kelly Alfaro-Alvarez, Angelina Larkin, Erik Flores, Grace Wildermuth and Brooke Biernacki.
The Memory Project filmed a video of the refugees being presented with their portraits and sent it to Huntington High School. It packed powerful wallop.
“I think it’s wonderful that Huntington gets to participate in such a good cause every year,” Ms. O’Beirne said. “Each piece came out beautifully and it’s always heartwarming to watch the video of the kids receiving their portraits.”
Over the past 15 years, the Memory Project organization has created over 130,000 portraits for children in 47 countries.