Last November, over 95 volunteers remotely assembled 5,000 Bravery Boxes for children in foster care. The Bravery Box project is a new initiative conceived during the pandemic in an effort to extend the impact of intentional art making to even more children. Starting in February, every child entering foster care throughout Arizona will receive a Bravery Box. There are simple plastic pencil boxes containing art supplies, a hand-decorated affirmation card, and an activity booklet (in both English and Spanish) containing instructions for intentional art activities designed to help children reduce stress and build resilience. In the coming months, we plan to take the lessons we learned throughout this process and distribute another 4,000 Bravery Boxes by the end of the year.
Thank you to the enthusiastic and dedicated volunteers from APS, Desert Financial Credit Union, Hispanic Business Student Association, National Charity League, and Studio Ma, as well as the many individual volunteers from our community who made this project possible. When we announced a need for Bravery Box assembly in the beginning of November, we were overwhelmed by an outpouring of support. All volunteer assembly slots were filled within five days! For three weeks, these volunteers picked up assembly kits from Free Arts, lovingly prepared the boxes at home, and returned completed Bravery Boxes to our office. Many volunteers said how much they enjoyed the experience and were happy to support Free Arts in this way. It was a heartwarming sign that even during the most challenging times, our community is eager and ready to serve.