ArtHouse – Charity-Small Business Grant – thanks to the Oakville Community Foundation’s (OCF) Oakville Resiliency Fund:

For 11 Years ArtHouse has been supported by two Oakville Business Champions. The MEDICINE SHOPPE PHARMACY has generously donated an annual sponsorship towards our Festival Series Events, and BARKLEY DESIGN PRINT & COPY has discounted the cost of our Design and Print needs. At the outset of the pandemic, both businesses suffered dramatic declines in their revenues. We are grateful for the creativity and generosity of the Oakville Community Foundation and the financial gift that has been provided to ArtHouse through the OCF’s Oakville Resiliency Fund and its fundholders to support our local businesses at this most critical period.

In late March ArtHouse became an Enhanced Essential Provider. And while we’ve always considered ourselves Essential knowing what an important role our programs play in the lives of ArtHouse kids who have no access to the arts, we partnered with four restaurants providing weekly dinners to 60 ArtHouse families (2,700 meals over eight months). More recently we transitioned from the restaurants to join our long-time partner Food For Life where our families throughout Halton are now enjoying delicious fresh dinners prepared weekly from Rescued Food.

Our foundation of Arts Programs have also played a centre-stage role as we “pivoted” with Educational You-tubes and Live Zoom Interactive Programs that are now reaching close to 200 of our young people – 8 ArtHouse Instructors have “virtually” adapted and we are super grateful for their skills. From Musical Theatre to Visual Arts, we’ve seen attendance growth at each of our Virtual Programs and now have a waiting list! Plus we continue to collaborate with our partners at the Children’s Aid Society of Halton, Reach Out Centre for Kids and Halton Multicultural Council by offering Virtual Visual Arts Programs to their children and youth.

Barkley’s have provided Arts Supplies for our ArtHouse Programs including items that they may not have readily on hand, but which they have graciously accessed through their wholesale suppliers.

And it gets better – for the last 8 years, ArtHouse has provided up to 50 Families with gift cards and toys to bring some joy into their lives. This year thanks to our Medicine Shoppe friends, we will be delivering a Health Hamper to each family, with vitally needed items requested by these Families that may include baby formula – feminine hygiene products – deodorant – razors – teen kits – body wash – toothpaste/brushes – teen washes (for acne) – sunscreen, etc. over-the-counter medications and various other health needs (vitamins, etc.)

It may be an old cliche, but the “Village” is thriving through collaboration and we are super grateful.

We are onto something pretty special and we are just not sure when it’s all going to end. Our ArtHouse families have invited us into their lives, and whether it’s to support some of their most urgent needs, or ensure they have access to our programs, our goal is to support the Whole Child – creatively, physically, socially, emotionally, intellectually, educationally and nutritionally in an atmosphere that is supportive and safe.

We are in this for keeps!

Don Pangman