Naropa Community Arts Studio-International Receives Jenzabar Foundation Grant

| 6/27/2012 8:28:19 AM

The Jenzabar Foundation

Naropa University’s nationally-recognized graduate studies Art Therapy program’s Naropa Community Art Studio-International has received a three-year grant from The Jenzabar Foundation, which was presented to the University during Jenzabar’s annual Student Leadership Awards ceremony in Dallas, Texas on May 30, 2012. The Jenzabar Foundation is dedicated to creating opportunities for students, as well as higher education organizations and non-profits, to encourage fellow students to be engaged citizens of the world.

The Naropa Community Arts Studio received specific attention from the Jenzabar Foundation for its service learning trip to Cambodia to aid and train survivors of sex trafficking. In May 2012, the group of art therapy graduate students and Naropa faculty member Sue Wallingford traveled to Cambodia to learn more about the ways art therapy can be integrated into providing shelter for girl survivors that have been victims of the sex trade. The trip is the culmination of dedicated effort to increase awareness for the mission of the Naropa Community Arts Studio and to raise funds to bring the team of Naropa Art Therapy students and faculty to Cambodia.

"We found Naropa University’s Community Art Studio International program to be very unique in its approach to addressing the needs of those who have suffered from the ills caused by human trafficking," said John Beahm, The Jenzabar Foundation’s Executive Director. "The Jenzabar Foundation is proud to support the Studio’s application of art therapy to promote social justice, and we look forward to a partnership that will help the program grow to serve other communities with similar needs in the coming years."

Todd Kilburn, Chief Administrative Officer and Interim Vice President for Business Affairs, who accepted the award, said of receiving this important support, "Naropa University is honored to receive this grant from the Jenzabar Foundation in support of the amazing work our students have done under the direction of their professor, Sue Wallingford. Their commitment to human rights and their willingness to invest themselves in making a difference makes this a significant partnership with the Jenzabar Foundation, which seeks to encourage such social entrepreneurship. I express gratitude to Jenzabar’s CEO, Robert A. Maginn, and the Executive Director of the Jenzabar Foundation, John Beahm, for their personal support and encouragement of the Naropa Community Arts Studio – International and the work being done in Cambodia."

Naropa faculty Sue Wallingford spoke about the enormity of the work the art therapy students have taken on. "I am reminded of the words of one of my students who spoke to me of the outpouring of support we felt from the community at every turn. ‘This is so much bigger than we are.’ There is a force holding the potential that perhaps we can make a difference in the lives of the people we work with, and in our own lives too. We are very grateful for The Jenzabar Foundation’s support."

The NCAS-I initiative reflects The Jenzabar Foundation’s mission of efforts by students to better the world outside of their college and university communities. Through the help of the three-year Jenzabar Foundation grant, this project will offer art therapy and training to survivors of sex trafficking in Cambodia.

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