Budding artists from 13 Jamatkhanas unleashed their creative talents to donate almost 800 pieces of artwork to over 25 care homes across the country. Illustrations, poems, photographs, tapestry, painting and even crochet were created and delivered by local teams in a COVID-19 secure way.
Members of the Jamat used this opportunity to reflect on happy moments in their lives and share these with residents through their artwork. This helped overcome the sense of isolation many care home residents were feeling and engaged the Jamat during such extraordinary times.
‘Smiles’ were not limited to care home residents, but to all artists from the Jamat too. Artists as young as 5, to 60, together with a team of 53 dedicated Ismaili CIVIC volunteers, worked with the Ismaili led Spectrum Consortium of care home providers to bring the project to life. As well as the physical donation of the artwork to the care homes, a digital legacy features as part of AKYSB’s heARTspace platform, which launches in 2021.
"The fact that the community reached out in such an artistic and heartfelt way to our residents means so much to us and them. We look forward, post COVID to working together in the future." Sue Shaw, Home Manager Foxton Grange, Leicester.
Like many Ismaili CIVIC projects, our approach is one of partnership. Following Smile through Art, the link with care home residents in the Manchester area was further strengthened with the delivery of personalised seasons greeting cards for the residents and staff of local care homes. Future plans include supporting care homes and the residents by providing friendship services.
If you’d like to get involved, please log-on to IIUK.org and complete the registration process to become an Ismaili CIVIC volunteer.