Painting Awareness for Endangered Animals, Artists w/ Disability Try to Stop Extinction
By rebecca trujillo - directora
Revewing drawings animals in danger of extinction
The artists working for awareness of the Nicaraguan animals in danger of extinction hope to make 2021 a year of change. Even with COVID, they want to create more awareness of these endangered animals. Most of the Nicaraguan's favorite animals are in imminent danger, such as the Toucans that fly in the forests and the Dolphins that swim in the Nicaraguan lakes. They have lost their habitats, or their habitats have been changed drastically by development projects and other human interventions. The artists with disabilities believe that if enough people become aware that animals are in danger, they can be saved from extinction. The spread of COVID is no reason to ignore the plight of these animals. The best tool these young people have is their art. They can inspire people and help begin conversations on ways to save animals. They have discovered most people have no idea how close we are to losing these animals. Victoria is an artist who lives in a rural community outside Matagalpa. She has to take various buses to get to work, so her family had to make special arrangements to work in the city. Taking a bus is hard for Victoria since her mobility is dependent on a wheelchair, and buses in Matagalpa, are chronically overcrowded and are not accessible to wheelchairs. But that did not stop Veronica. However, because she lives in a rural area, she is more aware of the suffering animals. She sees fewer and fewer animals in her rural home. She is convinced that by working together, they can do something to change this situation. These enthusiastic artists have affected many in Matagalpa. Their hope for 2021 is that more people will join them to bring awareness to the animals in danger. Some actions that cause the problem include one crop farming, development projects, and plastic pollution. They are making plans to involve more students to participate in the painting contest. The winning paintings will become posters used for awareness not just in Matagalpa but in other parts of Nicaragua. This year they are also hoping to involve the schools in a poetry contest. The contests are part of the annual Fair for Animals in Danger of Extinction sponsored by Familias Especiales. They are teaming up with the neighborhood Mother Leaders to do some mini fairs in different neighborhoods instead of one big fair in Familias Especiales Park. The artists want to do more hands-on work in these fairs, like have a booth where they are actually painting images of animals and face-paints of people's favorite animals. By the time the fair comes along, they hope to be proficient in their silk screening, their newest endeavor. They have received a grant to purchase material to start. They are beginning training to reproduce these endangered animals on more objects like t-shirts and aprons and items that we have never even thought about. Once they learn silk-screening, nothing will stop them. As one artist explained, painting these animals can keep them alive for others. We are only a vehicle for their spirit to speak: "We are part of creation, and we need to survive." The other hope for 2021 is to get more information and research on these animals by making contacts among different animal groups. One of these contacts is an active program to save sea turtles, especially their eggs, from poachers. They hope to invite these organizations to the fairs throughout the year and find more energy in their fight to save the animals in danger of extinction in Nicaragua. We are so proud of these young artists, animal activists, who want you to know that you have made a difference through your support. In their lives. What a fantastic way to fight extinction than through artwork. The artists have always said that they identify with these animals because of their disABILITIES. A young person said, "We don't want to become extinct ourselves." So, thank you. Please continue to help them create so that these animals can be at the forefront of people's minds when they make decisions that affect their habitats. The only way, according to the Artists, is to fight this together through their art.
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