From Workshops

2016 Pile of Smile Valentine Workshop

PileOfSmileWorkshopPileOfSmileWorkshop PileOfSmileWorkshopPileOfSmileWorkshop

I vividly remember the excitement of Valentine’s Day as a child. I agonized over finding the perfect set of cards to hand out to my schoolmates. We made heart pouches in class to hold our cards and couldn’t wait to go through all the lovely messages. Fast forward a good number of years later and I can’t remember the last time I even bought Valentine cards, let alone made one. Like with most things when we get older, it’s easy to forget the simple joys of childhood.

But for some, childhood isn’t always so simple. There are children all over the world that struggle to lead normal lives while battling cancer. They have a lot more to worry about than what cards they are going to get at the store. Sometimes they have to miss school altogether.

PileOfSmileWorkshopPile of Smile knows that a little act of kindness can go a long way. That’s why we partnered with our friends at Jammin Java and South Block Juice Co. to put together a free workshop inviting people to make Valentine’s Day cards for children in need.

Kids—young and old—came together and enjoyed a day surrounded by good people, fun craft paper designs, and glitter….lots and lots of glitter. It was amazing to see the love and care that went into making each card. We were able to make many unique cards. Share some laughs. And dropped only one container of glitter on the carpet.

And thanks to the generosity of those who came, we were able to send cards to all our wish kids and donors with the utmost love. We were also able to send 10 cards and 10 of our activity books to 5 new cancer treatment centers.

Whether you’re making or receiving it, art can really heal the soul.

For those who made cards with us, thank you for taking time out of your day to make someone else smile. We hope to see you again at another workshop soon.

For those receiving cards, thank you for being our Valentine. Thank you for being brave. Thank you for being you.

Introducing Pile of Smile and the First Art Workshop

It all started with a little girl and a dream. Eight-year-old Imogen wanted to make a difference, big or small, in the lives of children with terminal cancer. So she decided she could contribute to the cause by using her artistic talent to raise money to grant the children’s final wishes.

With that inspiring idea, Pile of Smile began.

Pile of Smile has a clear mission: Their vision “is to fulfill the biggest dream of every terminally ill kid on the planet.” The idea is quite simple. Kid’s fantastic artwork is for sale, and all proceeds go toward helping a sick child achieve his or her dreams.

The uplifting premise—created in the heart of a caring child to help other children—has certainly taken flight. In a matter of months, Imogen and the Pile of Smile team have sold artwork, hosted a workshop, completed an online art raffle, and spread the word.

In fact, Pile of Smile recently made donations for their very first beneficiary, Lucian the Light Warrior. You can read Lucian’s Story here.

Lucian was the first of hundreds (hopefully thousands) of boys and girls who will have their
 dreams fulfilled by Imogen and her charitable organization Pile of Smile.

The art transfer workshop took place at Lake Fairfax Park and was 
led by artist David Keyhan and Imogen herself!

Pile of Smile Art Workshop

More than two dozen people attended the first workshop and learned to create their very own wood transfer art piece to take home!

Pile of Smile Art Workshop Pile of Smile Art Workshop Pile of Smile Art Workshop Pile of Smile Art Workshop

Local companies like South Block Juice have teamed up with Pile of Smile
to support a good cause! All proceeds of this kid friendly juice product
will go toward Pile of Smiles mission.

Pile of Smile Art Workshop

The day was a success. Every attendee got to take home their treasured
artwork and Pile of Smile earned several hundred dollars to contribute
to Lucian the Light Warrior and his family.

Pile of Smile Art Workshop Pile of Smile Art Workshop

More photos here. Photographer Jan Hanus.

Thank you to our sponsors