Editor’s note: In the spirit of our spring Nonprofit Issue, we reached out to volunteers from several local nonprofit organizations, asking them to reflect on what inspired them to begin their work and the impact it has had on both the community and themselves.
I have been involved with Open Hearts Arts Center since I moved to Asheville in 2016 and met one of its artists at another nonprofit. My career was in developmental disabilities, so I was thrilled to hear that OHAC ’s mission combined my interest in art and people with special abilities.
As I continue to stay connected in different ways with the organization, I realize that the most endearing aspect of helping is the affection I feel for and from the artists when I work or just chat with them. The director, staff and artists show so much respect and love for one another as individuals. To me that represents a very hopeful way to navigate these times.
OHAC’s presence in the Asheville art scene gives people an opportunity to develop their skills and to be empowered as artists. By volunteering at OHAC, I’ve been able to contribute in some small way to a community of creative and loving people, which is a wonderful gift I will try to pay forward.
For more on Open Hearts Art Center, visit openheartsartcenter.org.
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