Canvas of Compassion:

Memory Project supports children in third world countries


Bao, Jenna Xu

The Memory Project is a way for artists to both participate in a service learning project and support children who have been victims of abuse. The project supplies photos of children from specific countries every two months. Students can use any medium to realistically create a personal portrait. Photo courtesy: Adhiti Chundur

Adhiti Chundur, Co-print editor in chief

Art serves many functions-as decoration, practical use, and social commentary. The effort and time it takes to produce a work of art for someone shows care, and the Memory Project aims to do just that.
“Over the summer I went on a mission trip to Haiti. It was my first mission trip ever and it was truly life changing. After I got back to Ohio I was thinking about the old cliche statement “mission starts now,” and thought about what I could do since I love art,” said Jiin Woo, 11.
The Memory Project is a non-profit organization that allows students around the world to create portraits of children and teenagers in third world countries and send them to the kids.
“I thought of ways I could share art with less fortunate people like the kids in Haiti, and came across a site online about the Memory Project and thought this was perfect,” Woo said.
Many times, these children are victims of neglect, abuse, poverty, and violence. These handmade portraits are to show that these children are valued and cared for and serve as personal mementos that they can treasure.
“It was exactly what I wanted to do and I thought others would like to join me so I started the the Memory Project Club at SHS, which is great because it so happens that were not doing Windows of Hope this year,” Woo said.
In this cycle, students are receiving portraits from children in Columbia. This is the schedule for this school year:
Syria: Children in refugee camps and orphanages (Due Jan. 15)
Ukraine: Children in orphanages-victims of Ukraine’s civil war (Due March 15)
Bolivia: Children living in a marginalized community (Due April 1)
Tanzania: Children living in orphanages and child welfare programs (Due mid-June)
When the portraits are done, the Memory Project films a video of the children receiving their portraits.
Like Windows of Hope, the Memory Project Club meets in room 146 on Mondays right after school.