In recognition of National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day on May 7, PRMS staff took part in a service project by helping package gifts of joy in the form of boxed craft kits to promote healing for children in area hospitals.
This year marked the 10th anniversary of the Awareness Day, which focuses on raising awareness about the mental health needs of America’s youngest citizens and how positive mental health is essential to healthy development from birth.The event is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
PRMS staff helped assemble the boxes for Kraftlove, a recently formed nonprofit that’s on a mission to inspire creativity and encourage self-expression by delivering craft kits to children in hospitals in the Metropolitan DC region.
Hospitals can be stressful for children, particularly because they’re often strange places with tubes, beeping machines and unfamiliar people. The group hopes the kits transform the experience from one of illness to normalcy, joy and healing.
“I founded Kraftlove because I have a heart for children in difficult situations, a passion for serving, and a dream to combine the two to make a difference in a powerful way,” Anhvinh Wright, President of Kraftlove Inc. in McLean, Va., said. “I want these children to feel that even though they are on a difficult journey, that they are not alone and that people they don’t even know are thinking about them.”
Eventually, Kraftlove hopes to offer kits nationwide to shelters, disaster relief, and other organizations where children face challenges.
Stephen Sills, PRMS Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said “PRMS employees were excited to help Kraftlove assemble its first-ever set of boxes. Our company is deeply committed to being of service to those in the behavioral healthcare community and to the groups and causes important to them.”
The mother of three young children, Wright is on maternity leave from her job as a behavior analyst working with special needs elementary students with the Falls Church City School system. A 2009 thyroid cancer diagnosis caused her to dig deep inside to find strength, hope and courage while overcoming pessimism. While admittedly not “a great artist,” Wright said art and gardening helped provide peace of mind during tumultuous times by allowing her to better embrace each moment with clear and focused awareness.
Perhaps it’s fitting that the PRMS service project, done April 16, included assembling 50 colorful Spring garden craft kits, complete with flower and bee cutouts, popsicle sticks where children can glue flowers, and model magic clay for “dirt.”
“We’re just so grateful to PRMS for supporting our mission and for taking time out of their busy schedules to assemble these boxes,” Wright said.
Kraftlove plans to get the first boxes to budding artists in May and hopes children will eventually send photographs of their artwork so that Kraftlove can display them on future craft-kit boxes. For more information on Kraftlove, please contact Anhvinh Wright, President of Kraftlove Inc., at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.kraftlove.com.