2012 JDI Arts and Cultural Partnership Award Presented
On May 25, 2012, the New Brunswick Foundation for the Arts (NBFA), in partnership with J.D. Irving, Limited, presented an award to St. Andrews Kiwanis Club and Sunbury Shores Arts and Nature Centre.
Sunbury Shores Arts and Nature Centre has worked for six years to offer what has become known as the CLASS Program to students in both the St Andrews Elementary and High Schools. The program has also expanded to include students in small, more remote communities: Lawrence Station and Deer Island.
Sunbury Shores Arts and Nature Centre nominated the St. Andrews Kiwanis Club for their efforts in offering art programs to local schools. To date virtually all students in St. Andrews (over the past six years, more than 2000 students) have been able to have a series of creative experiences as part of their regular school day through the program. Because of the commitment of Sunbury Shores and partners like the Kiwanis Club, the program has been a part of the curriculum and not an add-on, giving it credibility. In addition, the program is an approved credit for students at the grade 11 and 12 level.
Comments made by staff and administration indicate that the program has benefited students in many ways and made their school experience all that much more rich. A number of the students who have participated in the past are now pursuing visual arts at the post-secondary level and see it as a viable employment option.
Kiwanis initially became involved because it saw the need within the community. St. Andrews is a community that has a history of supporting visual artists; and to maintain this legacy, Kiwanis felt that it was important to help keep arts education alive. It was also deemed important because arts education and the creative experience builds self-esteem and confidence and provides an alternative outlet to sport and other academic pursuits. Art education builds appreciation of the world around us and of the potential within. It gives students an opportunity to say “I did that!” This is nowhere more true than in the annual CLASS Program Exhibit in the Gallery at Sunbury Shores.
Kiwanis and Sunbury Shores, with partners like JDI and the NBFA, have demonstrated a real example of the benefits of collaboration and building community.
Left to Right:
1. James Steel, Executive Director of Sunbury Shores Arts & Nature Centre
2. Nadia Khoury, New Brunswick Foundation for the Arts Board of Directors and Chair of the Awards Committee
3. Jackie Duguay, Executive Director, New Brunswick Foundation for the Arts
4. Sara Sparks, New Brunswick Foundation for the Arts Board of Directors
5. Matt Honey, President, Kiwanis Club of St. Andrews