August 13, 2004

Southwestern College Presents “Through the Eyes of Children”

Exhibition by Children in Poverty on Display at SWC Art Gallery

Chula Vista — Desperation. Fear. Anger. Hopelessness. Hope. Plans. Dreams. These are but a few of the many emotions expressed in a new art exhibition by child artists. “Through the Eyes of Children: An Experiential Exhibit of the Lives of Children in Poverty” will be on display at the Southwestern College (SWC) Art Gallery* from August 13-20, 2004.

The exhibit features the works of artists four to 16 years of age who have been homeless or hungry. For nearly 18 months, they met every Saturday to create the pieces for the exhibit. The result is works of art that tell their stories of living in a shelter, homelessness, and being hungry, while also capturing their hopes, plans, and dreams.

“Many low-income children have no faith that their interests will be protected by our political system,” said Aída Reyes, Community Outreach Coordinator for the Supportive Parents Information Network, Inc. (SPIN). “They lose confidence that their voices can be heard. We hope their voices will be heard through this exhibit.”

SPIN is an all-volunteer grassroots organization dedicated to helping low-income families achieve self-sufficiency. The organization has nearly 2,000 parent members who come together for information, personal growth, leadership development, and peer support.

For more than two years, SPIN has conducted a youth leadership program to encourage and support participation in the civic process by low-income children. SPIN youth have testified before policymakers, marched for affordable housing, and spoken at community events in an effort to educate others about the effects of poverty on families and children.

“Through the Eyes of Children” is a traveling exhibit that has been on display on several locations throughout San Diego County. It will be on display at the SWC School of Arts and Communication’s Art Gallery for eight days—August 13-20—before moving to San Diego City College.

The SWC Art Gallery adopted special hours for the exhibit. They are: 8:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. Aug. 13; 10:30 a.m.-2:00 p.m. Aug. 16-20, and 6:00-8:00 p.m. Aug. 17, 18, and 19. A special artist reception, to be attended by some of the children and their families, will take place Tuesday, Aug. 17 from 6:00-8:30 p.m. in the Gallery’s patio.

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