Artists to help Syrian refugee children

Artists to help Syrian refugee childrenimage

26 May 2015

Fann-A-Porter Gallery is hosting auction to raise funds for children in Syrian refugee camps

Where 150 participating artists from around the world with around 200 art pieces donated for an auction that will be held to support Syrian kids in refugee camps, on June 6, said Ghada Kunash, General Manager at Fann-A-Porter Gallery.

The event, which will be held at Grand Hyatt Hotel, is a humanitarian initiative established by Fatima Lootah, an Emirati artist, in collaboration with Emirates Red Crescent, under the patronage of Shaikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Culture, Youth and Community Development.

Fann-A-Porter Gallery, the organiser, will showcase the artwork of renowned artists from the Arab and international scene. Only the first 30 art entries will be auctioned in the event to be held next week.

“The rest of the art pieces submitted are available for direct sale. They will be available at our gallery ‘Fann-A-Porter’ in Kempinski Hotel and they will be on sale for people to buy until the end of June,” Ghada said.

Currently, the architect added, she is working on getting permission to visit the refugee camps in order to analyse the situation in which the children live. However, the Red Crescent has helped provide the necessary information such as the number of children in need and the types of services required.

“I really look forward to starting psychosocial centres and gaining the necessary support from our donors in order to be able to establish them at the refugee camps,” Ghada said.

She also explained that health services, educational facilities and, most importantly, psychosocial activities are essential in order for the children to lead a normal life.

“The psychosocial centres and activities that we look forward to establishing will include art, for example, since it is an activity that is therapeutic,” said Ghada.

She noted that a visitor to one of the camps noticed that many of the children chose not to speak due to traumatic experiences, such as witnessing the killing of their parents at a very young age.

“When they were asked to draw where they wish to live one day after they were given paper and colouring materials, many of them drew landscapes, trees, rivers and sunshine,” said Ghada. “When the visitor revisited several months later, she saw that one of the boys she worked closely with has grown into an expressive young boy.”

Many of the children have had their childhood ripped from them due to the violence and war they witnessed at a young age and, through art, Ghada wishes to help them reclaim their lost childhood. She also said that several anonymous donors have paid great amounts of money just to help these children trapped in areas of conflict.

“It’s uplifting to see that society still has individuals who just want to give for the sake of helping others,” she said.