“The Memory Project” is a nonprofit organization that invites art teachers and their students to create portraits for youth around the world who have faced substantial challenges, such as neglect, abuse, loss of parents, and extreme poverty. Over the past seven years, Drawing and Printmaking and NAHS students have created over 400 portraits for children in Madagascar, the Philippines, and Syrian refugees in Jordan, Puerto Rico, the Rohingya in Rakhine, Columbia, Nigeria, and Cameroon. This year, students at OHHS will be creating portraits for 20 portraits for children in Sierra Leone.
The portraits the students made for the school children in Sierra Leone will remind each child of their own strength and beauty; it will show them that someone living far away is paying attention to the challenges that they face. The ultimate goal of the project is to create portraits to help the children feel valued and important, to know that many people care about their well-being, and to act as meaningful pieces of personal history in the future. The project also provides an opportunity for students to practice kindness and global awareness.
“The Memory Project” portraits are created by students enrolled in the Drawing and Printmaking course (grades 9-12). Below are some of the highlights and images of the OHHS Drawing and Printmaking students selecting their child from Sierra Leone and the resulting artworks: