Over the past several months Leigh Allison-Ray, NCESD Student Assistance Professional serving Moses Lake School District, has been supporting the students in the Moses Lake High School Youth Action Team (YAT) with their latest project: artwork to promote wellness and resiliency.
YAT is a club of students dedicated to helping peers and younger students make healthy choices around substance use and mental health challenges. Earlier this year, through their relationship with the Moses Lake Community Coalition, the students connected with poet, artist, and motivational speaker Jordan Chaney.
Chaney speaks on his personal challenges and how the use of art through spoken word and painting can create healing. Throughout the year, Chaney met with the students every month via Zoom to build communication skills and self portraits. For their final project, he encouraged them to create something that could be used to foster hope within the community.
The students were provided a large canvas to create a hopeful message. After sharing their favorite messages and symbols with each other, YAT students discovered a recurring theme of hope was sunsets.
“Members mentioned that sunsets provided them hope,” explained Allison-Ray. “A beautiful end to an unhappy day, and hope that tomorrow would be better.”