Excerpts from "The Little Non profit that does" by Samira de Nijs, 2015
Celebrating 10 years of service as non-profit organization 2007-2017
"The decision to establish Women in the Arts was my response to a spiritual call to serve by bringing recognition to the talent and work of women artists and to provide access to free art education, especially to children. There are different kinds of poverty and the lack of access and exposure to the arts constitutes a form of intellectual poverty which Women in the Arts seeks to address.
The letters of Pope St. John Paul II to women and artists had a great impact on me. They clarified the need I could see, still present, for access to the arts and for the recognition of women artists. His expression of gratitude and appreciation calling to action community and religious leaders and the public to support the dignity of the work of artists and women initiated the response which formed the basis of the mission at Women in the Arts"
Excerpts from "The Little Non profit that does"
by Samira de Nijs, 2015
"The business model behind Women in the Arts is ruled by simple classic charity principles. However, despite its unassuming appearance on paper, Women in the Arts has a radical, compelling mission to carry out,” says Maria Guerrero, the organization’s founder, and by any objective standard her analysis is completely correct. Here is an organization that looks to break down the fine arts’ deep-rooted problems with professional gender inequality and financial discrimination in education, to bring justice to a habitually unjust culture ..."
"Women in the Arts started meeting at St. Andrew Catholic Church in 2005, a time when art courses in public schools suffered extensive cuts to funding in exchange for a focus on core curriculum courses to be tested on AP exams, leaving scholastic arts education to die it slow death by a thousand budget cuts. Women in the Arts attained non-profit status on October 26, 2007 and won its first grant and seed money from C101, West Orange Chamber of Commerce, which allowed the organization to launch the first free art program in 2009."
"As Women in the Arts and the Community School of the Arts grew over the years, it expanded its goal of giving back to include an annual art competition for female artists. The competition was started as a small way of showing some appreciation for the genius of women in an art world, and has successfully branched into an international competition with a cash prize."
"These classes are run by experienced college-educated and internationally-renowned professionals from various schools of color and form who are quite well compensated to lay down some high-quality in-depth education for anyone who wants to seriously study art, and their passion for their subject is met with great enthusiasm from the students."