Ava Pinnow, 10, of Racine, Wisconsin, a fifth-grader at West Ridge Elementary, makes cards and crafts, writes letters and draws pictures for senior citizens living in nursing and retirement homes to let them know they have not been forgotten during the isolation of the COVID-19 pandemic. Ava has always loved to draw. “I have so much art in my house, I wanted to share it with others,” she said. That opportunity came when a family friend who works with seniors in residential care told her she could make a difference in people’s lives by sharing her art.
That was all it took for Ava to get to work last spring. After sending her mother to pick up supplies, Ava began producing arts and crafts. She painted pictures and pumpkins, made Christmas cards, and learned how to make paper wreaths to brighten people’s rooms. “My volunteer activity made lots of people happy,” she said. “I love to see people happy.” It was particularly gratifying to her, Ava said, when one of the residents, a former artist, displayed several of Ava’s drawings on her door. Another memorable part of her project was when she appeared at a Memorial Day parade at a care facility that she had donated art to. “They were yelling and saying hi. They were SO excited,” Ava said. She estimates that she has given art to at least 50 seniors.