Philanthropy_Journal_logoUsing Art and Humor to Heal, June 2017

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” Pediatric patients often feel overwhelmed by the strict daily regimens they go through as they battle challenging medical conditions. This can result in these children feeling they have no control over their circumstances and very little joy in their day to day life. Drawn to Help, a national nonprofit based out of Columbus, North Carolina, was created to give these children a feeling of more control and help them find a creative escape from their daily battles, allowing them to laugh and heal along the way. A few years ago, cartoonist Steve Barr was devastated when a close friend’s son was diagnosed with Leukemia. Throughout her son’s treatment, the friend saw the impact art programs had on children in treatment facilities. She suggested that Barr develop similar programs, sharing his love of cartooning with children in hospitals. Steve began Drawn to Help after a few visits to local hospitals. Through word-of-mouth, the cartoon drawing classes spread rapidly. Within the first two years, the program reached multiple hospitals and camps for children fighting challenging diseases. The organization’s volunteers now include such comic and comic book artists as: Al Bigley (DC/Marvel), Tom Bancroft (Disney), Guy Gilchrist (“Nancy,” “The Muppets,” and “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) and Greg Cravens (Creator of “The Buckets” comic strip).”

Read the whole article, Using Art and Humor to Heal, here.

Learn more about Steve Barr’s project, Cartoon Classes for pediatric patients, here.