Kim Corl strives to take her Penns Valley Area art class a step beyond just creating art.
Last semester, her high school students spent much of their class time painting pieces for a school and its students in Ndola, Zambia.
By the end of the week, those paintings from Corl’s 25 students will be packaged, and then shipped to Africa as part of the global Haven of Hope project, which aims to offer hope and help promote change in impoverished communities.
It’s just working with students to give back, spread awareness and do something outside of the box
Kim Corl, Penns Valley Area art teacher
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“I’ve been on the trip before (in November 2015) and got inspirited to bring it to the classroom,” Corl said. “It’s just working with students to give back, spread awareness and do something outside of the box.”
Karl Leitzel, owner of The Green Drake Gallery and Arts Center in Millheim, will be traveling to Zambia on June 12 and will deliver the paintings to the school.
The Ndola School is a Christian primary school for orphaned and vulnerable children in first to seventh grade.
Last year, Ndola School students moved into a new facility, and final construction was completed earlier this year.
Prior to that, students were housed in a rented building, which Corl said was dark and cramped.
“There is finally plenty of classroom space for all the students, and the classrooms are full of light,” she said. “With fresh, clean walls, the teachers have been wanting to fill them with things. The paintings will really add to the learning environment and bring joy to students.”
Sophomore Isabella Culver painted her version of the world in colors she thought represented each continent.
I really wanted to paint something kids in Zambia could relate to and show the distance between where we are in central Pennsylvania to Africa
Isabella Culver, sophomore
“I really wanted to paint something kids in Zambia could relate to and show the distance between where we are in central Pennsylvania to Africa,” she said.
It took her about 10 classes to finish.
“It’s so much more than just painting for a grade,” Culver said. “It’s painting for a purpose.”