Ormond Beach resident Pat Spano will soon head to the southwest of France to teach a sketchbook journal class. But first, she spent the night of Thursday, Aug. 9 helping support local nonprofit Family Renew Community at an art sale hosted by Volusia County Women’s Network.
“I love the cause,” Spano said as interested art buyers buzzed around her table in Temple Beth El during the art sale. “I was a 37-year teacher — and not in art. I’m having a second life.”
Spano was one of over 40 Volusia County artists, about half of whom are from Ormond Beach, at the women's network’s second-annual “Hearts and Arts” show. This year, the event will benefit Family Review Community, a Volusia County nonprofit that provides transitional housing for homeless families with children while parents work to be self-sufficient and get permanent housing.
The cause is near to VCWN President Lori Gillooly’s heart. She is also the CEO of the area’s Habitat for Humanity, which was the benefiting organization of the inaugural Hearts and Arts event last year.
“Generally, our group is about supporting women and empowering them for leadership and entrepreneurship and community engagement, community development, and certainly, women artists are not only entrepreneurs, they are sharing their passion of art, and all of them were willing to come and be here tonight and agree to give 10% of their sales to Family Renew Community,” Gillooly said.
In addition to the profits from the portion of each artist’s sales, raffle items and tips will be donated to Family Renew Community, which has an Ormond Beach thrift store that benefits locals as well.
“One of the amazing things is we are a very community-based program,” Family Renew Community Executive Director Tony Deobil said. “We serve the people of Volusia County, so when the folks in the county turn around and support us, that helps us and fits into what we’re trying to do. We work with only Volusia County families, so we’re taking care of our own community and having the local groups be that support we need.”
Family Renew Community Development Director Denise O'Toole Kelly said that 22 religious organizations, including Temple Beth-El in Ormond Beach, support the nonprofit. The temple donated the space for the event.
As of Monday, Aug. 13, Gillooly said $1,078 was raised for the nonprofit, but the 10% donations from some of the artists’ sales are still being tallied.
For more information, visit https://www.familyrenew.org.