Did you know August is Crayon Collection Month? Yet another reason to keep up with Feel Good Friday as we delve into the details of Crayon Collection.
Founded in 2009 by Sheila Michail Morovati and based in Los Angeles, the mission of Crayon Collection is “to inspire a commitment to environmental consciousness and the infusion of art education in underfunded schools.” This 2-minute video gives a great overview of the organization.
One of their major programs is crayon recycling. Have you ever wondered what happens to the crayons that restaurants provide to kids to keep them busy? They get thrown away. And we’re talking about 150 million crayons a year! Meanwhile, teachers are spending their own money to provide supplies for underfunded schools. How can we connect these groups? Enter Crayon Collection.
In their own words, “Through our Crayon Recycling Program, we establish partnerships with national restaurant and hotel chains that distribute free crayons to children when they dine. Instead of throwing these crayons away after each meal, we establish a collection process for each location and ensure these gently used crayons are donated to a local school in need.” In addition, preschools and elementary schools throughout the country hold crayon drives then donate the crayons to neighboring schools.
That leads us to the Color Kindness Program, which encourages children who have collected crayons to group a rainbow of 10-12 crayons into a bag and include a hand-written note of positivity. As Crayon Collection explains, “this gentle expression of care goes a long way and is a source of joy for both recipient and writer.”
Another focus of Crayon Collection is arts education. A partnership with The Getty Museum, provides studio sessions for children from kindergarten to 5th grade, while volunteer artists working through the Boys and Girls Club provide after school art education programming.
Finally, Crayon Collection has launched a new venture called Habits of Waste which encourages people to rethink wasteful behavior and change their habits. That will require its own FGF post.
Since their founding in 2009, Crayon Collection has collected and donated over 20 million crayons! If you’d like to be part of this success, there are many ways to get involved. You can volunteer to run a crayon drive, teach an art program, and of course, make a donation. As always, help amplify the work Crayon Collection is doing by liking their Facebook page and following them on Twitter @CrayonCollectio and Instagram@crayoncollection.