Arts outreach organization Project Jericho finds new ways to connect with the community

A local community outreach group is giving people something to look forward to, a mission that is especially important in times of social distancing.

Project Jericho has introduced its Art from Apart initiative, a month-long program that encourages participants to practice creativity and self-expression every day.

It works like this: Project Jericho has come up with one word for each day of the month of April. The community is then invited to create a piece of art based around that one word.

Artworks are not limited to any one style. They can include the visual arts, music, poetry, and more.

Just a sampling of the 30 days of words include warmth, transformation, and intention.

The organization hopes to host an art show once the stay-at-home order is lifted.

"We want participants to think of that word when creating a piece of art from any medium they choose," says Lo Houser, director of Project Jericho.

"We want them to keep that art and use it to reflect on these days."

The Art from Apart initiative is an extension of Project Jericho’s larger mission, which is to provide at-risk youth with arts programming that will develop and encourage their talents. They do so through performing arts workshops, artist residencies, and family performances.

While the COVID-19 pandemic has limited its ability to reach the community, the organization is using social media to maintain that connection. Videos of members of the Project Jericho team are rolled out throughout the week, demonstrating different art projects that can be done at home.

"This is the beauty of art," Houser says.

"We are proactive and creative. This quarantine is not daunting but has been a challenge. It has invited us to think of new ways to be creative."

Visit Project Jericho online to keep up with the Art from Apart project and more.

Got a development news story to share? Email MJ Galbraith here or send him a tweet @mikegalbraith.

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