“Scar Art” class empowers cancers survivors to use art as a tool for emotional healing
The Gloria Gemma Breast Cancer Resource Foundation, a Rhode Island Nonprofit, based in Pawtucket, Rhode Island is partnering with Sprout CoWorking in Providence to exhibit healing arts programs, for Breast Cancer Awareness Month from October 1-19, 2023 at Sprout CoWorking, 166 Valley Street, in Providence.
Sprout CoWorking will feature artwork in its gallery from thirty-one cancer survivors who participated in a seven-month long program called SheRose. The SheRose Experience was created by Lisa McKenzie, founder of YouNights Events, and has been implemented at hospitals across the country. This four-part program was designed to benefit participants through unique group experiences, and participants had the opportunity to express themselves through painting, journaling, and sharing. The fourth part of the program included an empowering makeover and photoshoot at Alexandra’s Too, in Fall River, Massachusetts.
“The commitment of these women was amazing,” said Maria Gemma Corcelli, the Foundation’s executive director. “They had homework to do which enabled them to look at their trauma and surgical and emotional scars through a new lens.”
The art exhibit depicts the individual and collective strengths of the participants, and it is part of Gallery Night Providence, a once-a-month event that opens the doors to Providence art galleries in an effort to make art accessible to everyone. October’s Gallery Night is October 19th, from 5PM to 8PM and Sprout CoWorking’s gallery is on the Providence Trolly route. Not only will the artwork of the SheRose Program be exhibited, but ambassadors of the group will be there to share their stories. In addition, to the SheRose Program exhibit, two more of the Foundation’s programs will be featured on Gallery Night.
The Shining Your Light on Grief Program was designed to help people struggling with their grief after losing a loved one to cancer. The group was facilitated by certified grief counselor, Susan Lataille and the result of the program is a compilation of ten authors in a book entitled, Forever in Our Hearts: A Collection of Stories and Memories. Authors from the book will be on hand to speak to visitors and the book will be available for purchase that evening. Additionally, Beyond the Scars: Empowering Survivors, gave seven survivors the opportunity to embrace their surgical scars by revealing their scars in a photo session with photographer and breast cancer survivor, Agnnis Gama of Agnnis Gama Photography. Gama revealed her scars in a photo session previously and wanted to pay-it-forward so other women could see the beauty of their scars and feel empowered.
“We implemented these programs because we understand the people we serve, and we listen to their needs. The participants in both these programs were allowed to openly express themselves and they discovered their individual and collective strengths.” said Gemma Corcelli.
Established in 2004, the Gloria Gemma Breast Cancer Resource Foundation is a private nonprofit committed to helping people touched by cancer heal mind, body and spirit. Located in Pawtucket, their mission is to celebrate and nurture life in our local community before, during and after a cancer diagnosis by providing education, access to wellness resources and support programs to all those touched by cancer. Gloria Gemma is funded solely by the generosity of private and business donors, grants and corporate sponsorships, and 88-percent of all monies raised goes directly to the free holistic programs and support services it provides.