My Art Give-Away Project

Paintings on their way to Letty Owings Center

Paintings on their way to Letty Owings Center

I first heard about the Letty Owings Center, a residential treatment center for women with children about 10 years ago at a 12-step meeting.  And I knew they would be a great place to partner with for a philanthropy project I had so I contacted them and their response was an immediate and enthusiastic yes.

For a couple of years, I'd been involved in a wonderful program with teachers Dave Ellis, Lynne Twist, and Tammy White on transforming my relationship with money. One of our last assignments was to make a philanthropy plan. I balked at doing this because I don't have a lot of money to give away, but I realized that one of my biggest areas of wealth is my art work.  I began to think about how I could give some of it away, not just a piece at a time but a whole bunch of pieces.

In 1989, I had spent 28 days in a treatment facility in rural Virginia. It was a safe place but it had very drab walls. I wanted to enliven the experience of other recovering women. My timing could not have been more perfect as the staff at the center had jsut started a project to repaint all 30 residential rooms with bold, cheerful colors. 

“Jill’s soft pastel and acrylic pieces use a lot of bold colors, and they are a great fit with the environment we’re trying to create,” said Stephanie, a Letty Owings staffer in charge of the renovation. “We’re going to use Jill’s pieces to inspire color choices on the next 25 rooms.”

To make it easy for LOC to use the paintings, I invited friends and family to donate funds so that every piece could go to the center already framed. Two framing get-togethers later and all 31 pieces were ready for pick-up.

“We are beyond thrilled with this donation,” said Program Manager Tammy Hooper. “It was so generous of Jill and her friends to help us with the framing. We can’t wait to get these pieces up on the walls.”