Welcome to Art Relief International
Art Relief International works to transform the lives of struggling social groups in Chiang Mai, Thailand by offering them the opportunity to express themselves through an artistic lens.
Art changes lives. It is both a powerful means of expression and a recognized means of therapy – two things that are vital in the lives of ARI participants. ARI works to cultivate creativity, create an atmosphere of inclusion for groups that are often cast out and ignored, and encourage social change.
Our volunteer-based organization relies on dedicated and open-minded individuals looking to make a creative difference in the world. This unique opportunity to volunteer in Thailand rewards both volunteers and ARI program participants alike.
Art Relief International Volunteer Blog
Hearing Colour at Hope Home
The mood of this week's visit with the children of Hope Home was a little different than our previous visits. The day before the workshop, as I was putting the finishing touches on my lesson plan and preparing materials for our activities, ARI got the news that Laap, one of the children with cerebral palsy, had passed away in the early morning. Laap had been ailing of late, and our workshops were mostly designed to make him as comfortable as possible. During our last few visits, he was usually sleeping, though he was responsive to light therapy and music whenever he was awake, and the staff tried to take comfort in the peace and joy that art brought him.
Hope Home was obviously mourning Laap and feel his loss very keenly, so we tried to adjust the workshop to help the children find ways to express the emotions they were grappling with. For the past few months, ARI has been working with the children of Hope Home on healthy emotional development, identity creation, and self-expression through art. With this workshop, we built on the preceding weeks' work with sound and colour, focusing on helping the children associate colour and sound with emotion and teaching them to use colour and sound to express feelings.