In May 2008, The Moscow Times newspaper and Charities Aid Foundation teamed up to organize the Create Yourself charitable artistic program for at-risk children with disabilities. The range of aid offered to the children was expanded in 2009: in addition to the creative portion (working with the young people, an exhibition of their creations and a commemorative album) and raising funds for treating youngsters who are wards of the Center for Humanitarian Programs, The Moscow Times began actively conducting master classes and educational excursions for the children.
The results for 2009 were:
The Moscow Times newspaper raised 3,091,694.80 rubles ($104.589.81) toward medical treatment for the children. Eighty-seven children received aid over the course of the program.
A photography contest was held and an exhibition of the children’s work was staged at the Manezh in partnership with the Moscow House of Photography, the VTB Capital company and Mastercard.
A Create Yourself album was published that contained the works created by the young photographers. Every participant received a complimentary copy of the album.
In partnership with National Geographic Russia magazine, master classes were conducted at the Moscow Zoo, the Butterfly House and the NKO. The master classes were conducted by professional photographers from the Union of Naturalist Photographers, including Andrian Kolotilin, Vladimir Meshkov and Alexander Myaskov.
A culinary master class was held in cooperation with the Half-a-Teaspoon company.
Master classes in creativity were conducted at the Garage exhibition center.
Children’s excursions were organized to the Gallery of European and American Art of the 19th and 20th centuries, the 2009 World Press Photo exhibition, an exhibition by British sculptor Antony Gormley titled “Gravitational Field,” the “Kindness Wins Out” exhibition, the Museum of Chocolate and Cocao, the “Heroes of Our Time” exhibition, the Cosmonauts’ Memorial Museum and to the exhibition of book illustrations by Boris Diodorov held at the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts.
The children also took part in various events: the “Stars Lighting the Stars” concert in the charitable concert at the Spaskaya Bashnya festival, the “Kostroma” ballet production, the “Noon Recess” theater festival and the “Nutcracker” ice show.
The “I Also Want to Study” campaign was held prior to September 1 and collected children’s school supplies.
A presentation of the photo album and a charitable reception were held at the Marriott Aurora Hotel. All proceeds were given to the Center for Humanitarian Programs.
A program was launched to collect funds through the VTB 24 telebank for providing medical treatment to children in need.
The Create Yourself organizers would like to express their gratitude to the partners who supported the program: VTB Capital, the Moscow House of Photography, the German Printing Factory, UPM, Alexander Brown, Moscow Marriott Aurora Hotel, Mastercard, Intel, Salans, Ernst & Young, Kukhnistroi, Smart Action, Eksmo, Stage Entertainment, Ferrerro, Guta Group, Big Board, and to those individuals who were not indifferent to the problems faced by children with disabilities. Thanks to their participation, it was possible to publish an album and give it to the children, and to provide medical treatment and instruction to those in need.
Special thanks also to the informational partners of the project – National Geographic, Seasons, Collezioni and Na Rublevke magazines, the RB.ru portal, LiveJournal, the Analytical Bank Journal, Shareholders’ Newsletter, Moscow Accountant, Consultant, MFD InfoCenter and Deloshop publications, the Russian-British Chamber of Commerce, Infomarket informational agency, Personal Money internet magazine, Begin Group, the Economic Newspaper publishing house, Shtat magazine, the Lawyers’ Forum, the SuperJob site, The Career Forum, Trainings.ru and RJB.ru.
The Create Yourself plan for 2010 is as follows:
Develop the artistic aspect of the project: in addition to the contests of children’s photographs and drawings, organizers plan to start collecting stories and fairy tales and to later publish a book of the best stories with color illustrations. As an embellishment, the book will include stories and fairy tales by famous contemporary writers.
Conduct educational master classes (photography, culinary skills, leadership), excursions and facilitate children’s participation in other creative events.
Raise funds to provide medical treatment to children who are wards of the Center for Humanitarian Programs.
Expand programs for collaborating with companies and banks.
The Create Yourself founders will be pleased if you take an interest in the charitable program to aid children. Your participation could help a little person get better, start something constructive or simply provide the energy and desire to live and develop. Give yourself the opportunity to hear a child’s gratitude.