During our last trip to Liberia in February this year we were able to revisit the boys in the Journey Against Violence program founded by Joshua Milton Blahyi, AKA General Butt Naked. When we arrived at our meeting place on the beach they greeted us with open arms and many smiles. We brought with us the funds we had raised via our Indiegogo campaign for his program- which reforms former child soldiers and others who were living on the streets as a result of the perilous times during the war. The campaign raised over $2,600! Joshua smiled and was very pleased about that. Joshua was expecting us and knew we had some money for him so he had the boys paint the pictures while we went out on our backpacking trip which lasted three days in the jungle. When we returned, we met up once again with Joshua’s boys and did some last minute interviews. They gave us sixteen beautiful hand-painted watercolor paintings as well as some hand-painted cards. What a beautiful experience to meet these boys once again. There, Mitch gave the rest of the money to Ernest, Joshua’s brother, and executive assistant in the JAV Program (Joshua couldn’t meet us there that time) and promised the money would get to Joshua. To help fund the JAV program we have some of their original paintings as well as canvas prints available for sale. To purchase these beautiful works of art done by former child soldiers and to help give them a better chance at life, visit the store on our site here. You may also purchase the paintings from our Facebook store here. Thanks for all your support!
We have been so moved by all the support we have received for Painting Peace, our project to help rescue, clothe, feed, educate, and reform child soldiers. The generous donations we have received will change lives. Friends, family, coworkers, local businesses, and even children, have rallied around the cause. One donation that came in today, particularly impressed us. We think you will give it a “thumbs up,” as well. Meet Sheri Sveen. Sheri, a smoker of many years, has recently decided that it’s time to quit. As an important part of her resolve, she gives the money she saves on tobacco products to a charitable cause. The most recent cause she has chosen to support is our painting peace campaign. Sheri is making a big difference in her own life as well as helping to take kids in Liberia off the street, feed them, educate them, and break their addictions. We are inspired by her effort and would like to offer her our sincerest thanks for her support. Sheri, you are awesome!