The glee was palpable and the smiles were plenty as mesmerized youngsters listened to the old time tales shared by Virgin Islands culture bearer, Dr. Lois Hassel-Habtes at the Annual Student Hall of Hope Art Exhibition and Fun Day that took place at the Reichhold Center for the Arts on May 17, 2017.
“With such a long-standing history of engaging young people as a school principal, author and storyteller, I had no doubt that our young attendees would be as enraptured as they were for our recent event,” explained Karen Nelson-Hughes, ICMC Community Relations Director. “Each year we engage a speaker who we know will offer our young public elementary and middle school attendees, words of wisdom, inspiration and the motivation to live their best and healthiest lives, armed with the invitation to be their best creative selves.”
Created in 2005, The Student Hall of Hope (SHOH), initiated and presented by International Capital and Management Company (ICMC), honors the artistic talents and creativity of Virgin Island students, as each year ICMC works with St. Thomas’ public school art teachers and administration to invite public, elementary and middle school students on St. Thomas and St. John to create works of art and artistically display their personal renditions of “Celebrate Life,” in recognition of ICMC’s client, Cancer Treatment Centers of America’s annual ‘Celebrate Life’ event.
“As one of the first community engagement programs started by ICMC back in 2005, The Student Hall of Hope event is certainly near and dear to us at ICMC as we endeavor to support the creative arts of our talented youngsters,” says ICMC President, Cornel Williams. “The annual event continues to draw hundreds of children to the Reichhold Center each year, and it makes us proud to know that we are able to support them as they explore and expand their creative horizons.”
A wonderful opportunity to also offer attendees the all-important message of hope, healthy living and reaching for the stars, ICMC provides all of the art materials necessary for each representing class to create a work of art around the theme and the event culminates in a fun-day and much-celebrated art show, inclusive of awards, student performances and fun-filled activity stations such as make and take arts and crafts stations, traditional games such as jump rope and jacks, and face painting and balloon art for all attendees.
A day of true ICMC community engagement, team work and giving back, stakeholders at ICMC were proud to take time out to put their hands, minds and creative talents to work for the children of the Virgin Islands. The event drew over 200 students from across the Territory with on stage performances that included The Cancryn Junior High School Dynamic Innovations Drum line, The EBO Quadrille Dancers and the Bowsky Mimers.
In addition to showcasing the student’s artwork at the event, the pieces are currently displayed in the main lobby of the Schneider Regional Medical Center.
In an effort to further support the children of the Virgin Islands to expand their creative horizons, ICMC also put in place a quarterly art supplies program six years ago that offers VI public schools a consistent avenue of support via a regular donation of art supplies for each school annually that is made available to elementary and middle school art teachers on St. Thomas and St. John.
For more information about the Student Hall of Hope “Celebrate Life” Art Exhibition and Fun Day, kindly contact Karen Nelson-Hughes at (340) 715-5833.