The concept is simple: everyONEcounts is an initiative that aims to collect one thousand artworks, to be sold at one thousand Rand each. The venture began in response to the plight of abandoned babies, and its funds go to the organisations that take care of them.
Joan Martin, an artist and art teacher at Durban Girls’ College got involved when she agreed to hang the everyONEcounts exhibition, and has since become a director of the organization. Now, she is increasingly involved in the everyONEcounts@school part of the programme, taking her connection with the project into her own classroom. “Our goal is to raise awareness for the plight of abandoned babies,” she says,
Martin’s grade ten learners are creating artworks to be sold as part of the everyONEcounts fundraising effort, and their response has been extremely enthusiastic. Sonali Chetty commented that everyONEcounts allowed her and the rest of her class to be helpful to their community in their own personal way, and through a school subject that they enjoy. Fellow learner, Caitlin Stott says that, “because it’s for charity and because we have a chance of selling out artwork, it motivates us even more to make a good art piece.”
EveryONEcounts received much attention from children at other schools hoping to participate in the project by contributing an artwork. For this reason, everyONEcounts@school was launched. Using her own experience with her learners as a starting point, Martin provides guidelines on the everyONEcounts site to assist art teachers and their students in creating artworks for the charity, such as allowing them to experiment with textures and layering.
In a similar method to that used by the everyONEcounts initiative at large, each art student’s piece is sold for the same price, and the funds are handed over to everyONEcounts. Martin explains that it’s useful for art teachers to be able to teach their learners practical lessons and to allow them to practice working around a theme. “Most importantly,” she says, “they will learn about how they can contribute to society through the medium of their art.”
As everyONEcounts moves closer to its goal of collecting 1000 artworks and art students find their own way of getting involved, you can help too. If you would like to contribute to the everyONEcounts initiative, either by creating an artwork or by buying one of the pieces already on offer, visit the website at http://www.everyonecounts.co.za. To find out more about getting involved with the project at school, go to http://www.everyonecounts.co.za/site/projects.