Plan Of Action
The importance of artwork on our walls cannot be overstated. I visited the Battle Creek Veterans facility in 2012 and after a quick tour recognized they were in serious need of new artwork. I met with the staff working in gift services who were eager to select an initial donation of about two dozen 11x14 and 13x19 matted photographs.
According to the Saturday Evening Post, January 2009, The simple act of enjoying a work of art can be just what the doctor ordered. The University of Michigan Health System in Ann Arbor has an “Art Cart” program, a kind of lending library of framed poster art. Volunteers go room to room allowing patients to select artwork that connects with them personally to hang on their walls.
In 2013 I was pleased to provide another two dozen prints to help the Battle Creek facility initiate their “art cart”, a growing phenomenon that grew from the University Of Michigan’s program. You can see some images of the cart at the bottom of this page.
After my rewarding experience at Battle Creek I contacted the Grand Rapids Veterans Home. Tiffany Carr, The Director of Community Relations took a special interest in selecting the appropriate photography for each occupant of their newly refurbished rooms. I have a vast selection of photography, ranging from landscapes, actions sports, wildlife, architectural, and vintage car and yacht photography. Tiffany took the initiative to identify the interest of each resident. She selected a line of tractors for an old farmer, a vintage automobile for a mechanic’s room, and placed horse photos on the wall of a woman who loves them. The Veterans Administrations care for women who were spouses of veterans, along with service women.
A shortcoming of communal living is adjusting to the limitation of choices. So when a Veteran is given the option
of what is placed on the wall of their room it is very meaningful. It is my desire to continue to increase my already broad scope of images from which the Veterans may choose.
My growing National Park images have proved to be a good match for the homes. However with help from others I wish to establish regional galleries to offer our War Heroes. I expect Veterans Homes in the North East would be delighted to exhibit scenes of the fishing villages of Maine. The North West their fishing villages as well as land marks specific to the Olympic area of the NorthEast.
Because I am from the Midwest I have already chronicled the Great Lakes and Chicago in particular with my camera. Each area of the U.S.A. has a uniqueness to be appreciated by those Veterans in that area. It is my desire to provide them with those special prints that will make their days a little brighter. Recognizing visual
imagery related to one's life has been proven to slow the onset of dementia. But to me it shows these Vets have not become forgotten old soldiers.
It is the ultimate goal of Pictures For Vets to someday establish a fantastic national gallery from which our special soldiers can select their own special piece of artwork. A person who loved that split-window 1963 Corvette deserves to have one on the wall if they choose. As Tiffany Carr at the Grand Rapids V.A. showed me, someone who had a Labrador Retriever as a child deserves to have a photograph of one on the wall to greet them every day.
We are often reminded that the Veterans Administration has failed our service members terribly. This indictment of the upper level bureaucracy is well deserved, but I have found all of the people I have met at the Veterans Administration to be dedicated compassionate individuals.
We now have a whole new generation of soldiers for which we must provide care, and not just health care but total care. It is apparent the private and nonprofit sector must assist to provide total care. Financial assistance must be generated by dollars given by our population-at-large in order to accomplish this lofty goal.
Please join in a partnership with us to provide the quality images that will make our war heroes smile.
Any size donation will be greatly appreciated. Please share our mission with your friends.