Saturday, December 1, 2012

P.O.W.E.R. Art Fundraiser Continues Sunday

Above: Callie and Ben entertain a steady stream of folks coming to check out the P.O.W.E.R. fundraiser today at 309 5th Avenue SE, in downtown Olympia next to Rainy Day Records. The event continues on Sunday from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
P.O.W.E.R. Art Fundraiser Continues Sunday 

by Janine Unsoeld

Despite the rain, a steady stream of bazaar and arts supporters were out in force today, knowing that the best place to shop is indoor, supporting local crafters, school parent-teacher organizations, businesses, and organizations doing good work.

One of those organizations is Parents Organizing for Welfare and Economic Rights (P.O.W.E.R.) in downtown Olympia. Their mission statement says that "P.O.W.E.R. advocates for and with low-income parents for a strong safety net while working toward a world where children and care giving are truly valued, and the devastation of poverty has been eradicated."

Their cozy office, at 309 5th Avenue SE, next to Rainy Day Records, was the scene of live music and art offered by local artists as a fundraiser for their efforts. Participating artists had the choice to donate 50% or 100% of their proceeds to the organization and were encouraged to write biographies to place near their art.

One young artist, Sarah Bredeson, wrote this: "I am 12 years old. My mom and I have helped with P.O.W.E.R. off and on for the last few years. I enjoy craft projects, painting, acrylics, sewing, making self-care items like scented bath salts, and beading. I am supporting P.O.W.E.R. because I like the work they do in making people aware of others living in poverty. I enjoy art because it is a stress relief and FUN."

Today, art by Jennifer Khuns (mosiacs), Marla Beth Elliott (knitting), Lynn Grotsky (beading), and other lesser known artists filled the walls and office space, which includes a separate child care room, and kitchen filled with treats and warm drinks for sale.

The event continues tomorrow from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. with live music by other musicians throughout the day.

P.O.W.E.R. sponsors several activities, including a Women's Economic Collective. For more information about the work of P.O.W.E.R., go to or call (360) 352-9716.

Full Disclosure: Little Hollywood Photography is a participating business at this worthy event. I was raised by a wonderful, hardworking single mom, and I was a single mom for most of my children's lives. By cobbling together a variety of self-employment, artistic, and entrepreneurial activities, I've never missed a mortgage payment. I'm one of the lucky ones.

Above: Necklaces offered by local mosiac artist Jennifer Khuns. Khuns is most recently known for being the artist of the artesian well work in downtown Olympia.