2020 Highlights & News

2020 was one wild ride, and through it all, the ArtVan community showed up! Thank you to all our friends who were able to help raise funds and donate supplies during a very uncertain year. We are heading into 2021 with full hearts and creative ideas to continue serving ArtVan Youth.

With each gift, the arts keep rolling!

This year, amid a global pandemic, we were able to continue serving our core neighborhoods, safely, and consistently by thinking outside the box.

  • Prepared & distributed 600 ArtBags, full of art supplies and ten instructional project ideas for Youth with limited arts access
  • Started a YouTube channel to coincide with each ArtBag
  • Provided socially-distant, COVID-adapted, quality art therapy to over 1,400 Youth from June to December
  • Serviced the ArtVan in order to reliably drive hundreds of miles between Midcoast and Southern Maine
  • Hired an Expressive Arts Therapist to further support ArtVan’s unique co-facilitation model

“I can’t see my friends … I’m glad ArtVan is here!”

Our Art Therapists, Jamie & Bailey, adapt each ArtVan session and ArtBag to meet specific needs of our Youth and neighborhoods. Together, ArtVan Youth explored topics like:

  • Identifying safe spaces and feelings related to COVID-19
  • Expansion to counteract remote learning & screen time schedules
  • Processing the impact on family systems
  • Encouraging self-expression through artistic methods
  • Reflecting on gratitude and personal victories


Thank you to our 2020 Foundations!

  • The Onion Foundation
  • Sam L. Cohen Foundation
  • Maine Women’s Fund
  • Davenport Trust
  • Jane B. Cook 1992 Charitable Trust
  • The Aldermere Foundation
  • Alfred M. Senter Fund
  • Bowdoin Common Good Grant
  • First Parish Church, Brunswick
  • Baldwin Foundation
  • Maine Community Foundation: Community Development Block Grant


And, thanks to The Cryer for getting the word out!

Check out The Cryer’s January issue to further dive into the power of the therapeutic arts and how important relationships are to ArtVan.

With so many community-focused nonprofits out there, we are extra grateful when you choose to support ArtVan Youth artists!

To explore more ways to support Youth through volunteering, art supply donations, or sponsorships, contact Shannon Els, Development & Communications Director, shannon@artvanprogram.org.