As we have not been able to enter the McGuire Veterans hospital since the onset of the pandemic, we have found other ways to provide services to our veterans. This week, an ORIGAMI project art kit, designed by VCU Gerontology Student, Larissa Hoyle, with the assistance of Work-Study Student Audrey Hale, and preparation by Jamie Wiggingotn is being delivered by Melba Gibbs to Freda Sergi, Recreational Therapist at Hunter Holmes McGuire Veterans hospital for 30 veterans. A cup of coffee is a good thing!
There’s the old saying of “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.” While our veterans have faced the same challenges in the past year, we had the will to continue to serve them through creating art projects that can be delivered or mailed to their front door.
Creating art can be a powerful experience for veterans who battle PTSD and other combat-related illnesses. Through our efforts with art sessions, we seek to honor these men and women by not only allowing them to be creative but providing a warm and welcome engagement session. You can witness them letting their guard down and becoming open and relaxed every time we join them.
This past month, we were able to put together a fun and creative project using coffee, yep, good old caffeinated coffee! The veterans were provided with paper, paintbrush, and a baggie with coffee grinds. The coffee was mixed with water and the creative juices started to flow as the veterans used the coffee mix to paint their own creative piece.
When Covid-19 guidelines allow groups to gather again, we plan to welcome our veterans to outdoor art at the Art for the Journey Art Bus at McGuire Veteran’s Hospital later in May or June.
If you would like to volunteer, please contact Melba Gibbs at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our sessions are held on weekdays in the mornings from 10:00 to noon or early afternoons from 1:30 to 3:00pm (times are subject to change).
Read more about our Veteran's program on our website.