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2021 Top-Rated Nonprofit

drawchange Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture, Arts Education, Children & Youth, Education, Educational Services

Mission: Drawchange is a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to aid global change by supplying the world's children with empowering art experiences. Together we can provide the programs to allow them to effectively visualize a better life for themselves.

Results: We continue to empower over 1200+ children per year to expand their creativity while knowing they are capable of achieving anything they can imagine. We have ongoing programs with local homeless shelters, refugee communities, orphanages and asylum-seeking welcome centers in Atlanta, Tucson, Orlando, Puerto Rico, Louisville, and abroad, where we help children ignite their innate creative spark while imagining their dreams so they can become reality. The “drawchange Blueprint” includes our entire art-therapy based curriculum, volunteer handbook and training resources, necessary art supplies, management tips, step-by-step video instructions, access to our staff of Art Therapists, and daily contact with founder/CEO, Jennie Lobato. We continue to expand our staff as we now employ more employees than we ever have before and are continuing to add more hours for our dedicated staff. We have successfully established a self-sustaining international program in Costa Rica where the children of Fatima School receive art in their daily curriculum through drawchange. We have additionally begun a 6 year partnership to build a self-sustaining program in Kara Kore, Ethiopia, where we empower children living in one of the poorest city centers in Addis Ababa. In the Fall of 2021, we are thrilled to begin our MX/AZ Welcome Center Program, where we will train staff to conduct art therapy-based programs for children who have recently crossed the Mexican border into the United States. Along with our domestic and international art therapy-based programs, we have developed a year-long fundraiser, Interactive Kids Art Camp, which welcomes all children from our communities in Atlanta and Orlando to participate in art based after school programs and summer camps.

Target demographics: 5-10 year old homeless, refugee, asylum-seeking, poverty-stricken children

Direct beneficiaries per year: 1500 children +

Geographic areas served: Atlanta, Kentucky, Orlando, Arizona, Ethiopia, Costa Rica : Homeless and impoverished youth

Programs: - Ongoing art therapy-based programs in homeless shelters and community centers to help children visualize their dreams and emerge from poverty. . - Art Beyond Borders-take volunteer groups on international volunteer projects.

Community Stories

133 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Working with drawchange has been a life-changing experience for me. This organization has touched my life and heart in ways that can only truly be understood through working with the wonderful staff, volunteers, families, and children who make up the drawchange community.I found drawchange through a Google search after teaching children art but wanting to go deeper with the meaning behind what I was doing. I knew art was more than just a fun activity to do for children -- I saw it as a tool for children to express, heal and grow in a way that didn't require using words.The positive impact I've seen on the countless children I've connected with over the years through drawchange has been astonishing. From working at Atlanta homeless shelters to going on the drawchange Ethiopia trip twice to establish a lasting program to the impoverished children there, I've seen children open up and see more possibilities for their lives. I've seen children who were struggling to express their emotions become more emotionally-regulated and kind to themselves and those around them. I've seen children blossom in so many ways through the thoughtful curriculum drawchange provides to them -- especially if the child consistently joins sessions over time.I HIGHLY recommend volunteering, donating, and getting involved with drawchange. This organization is making big moves and causing immense positive change for children in poverty, which ripples out to create positive change in the family, the community, the city, the state, the nation, the world.Thank you, drawchange!!!

Comments ( 1 )

jennielobato Thank you much for your kind words, Tori! It's touching to see that we are not only impacting the children, but our volunteers as well. Thank you for your belief in us and also commitment to the children and our mission.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My experience with Drawchange has been amazing. Being with the children and seeing them smiling, was always the highlight of my day. The other volunteers as well were great! It's a wonderful environment to be a part of and its always so much fun being with the kids!

4 Gita K.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

DrawChange, like many non-profit organizations, is a loving and inspiring organization with people that commit all their energy and efforts into making a difference. However, what really stood out to me is how much our time and attention makes a difference for the kids on a weekly basis. We work with homeless kids so there is a priority to meet their basic needs to function properly, but that only goes so far. This organization alleviates an emotional and creative void that is often overlooked for children that may not have an outlet to express those abilities. Additionally, this organization is lead by one of the most driven, attentive, and innovative women I have ever met. It's the details and small gestures that really put DrawChange over the top.

4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Drawchange is one of the most inspiring nonprofits I've come across. They genuinely care about the children they are working with and it's a true joy every opportunity I get to volunteer! If you have the opportunity I definitely recommend volunteering at least once. It may even change your life!

5 MrDavid

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a military veteran, I've been a volunteer/mentor for several organizations/programs around the world and Drawchange is by far the BEST program I've been a part of. This program is a success because of the passion that Jennie and the staff displays each week. They help bring out the talent/creativity from each kid. Each week I look forward to interacting with the kids and watch them express themselves thru art. It is such a joy to see them smile and take pride in their artwork.

4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Drawchange is a great organization. The kids and volunteers always have so much fun with activities like music, coloring, games, etc. Jeanie the founder is such a great person and she works very hard setting up at all the events! I recommend this charity to anyone!!!

4 Melissa138

Board Member

Rating: 5

Non-profits are only as strong as those who are a part of it -- and Drawchange has some of the most incredible, passionate and empowering people within it. Drawchange has personally changed my life. It gave me a way to give back and help others using my creative skills. To see the children's attitudes change throughout art lessons is amazing. To see the happiness and confidence and empowerment that it brings them. I was able to travel two years with Drawchange to Costa Rica for the Art Beyond Borders trip. Art transcended language, age and culture on those trips. It was beautiful. I am forever grateful for the impact that Drawchange has made in my life and I highly recommend working with this organization if you can!

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4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Drawchange is a great organization! Unlike many other organizations, you don't just give your time and finances to Drawchange, but rather become a part of it. Drawchange mixes creativity, passion, hope, and service together. I have been searching for years to find an organization where I can use my design skills & creativity to help others, and Drawchange is exactly that. It is important to note that Jennie, founder of Drawchange, really utilizes the volunteers and involves them as much as possible in a variety of events and tasks. I was unable to travel on the Costa Rica service trip this Summer, but Jennie took the time to meet with me, show photos, and share stories. She made me realize that even though I was not present on the trip, the work that I have put in to the organization really did make a difference. Jennie believes that the more people who get involved, the more lives change. Every time I meet with her I leave inspired. She truly loves what she does.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Jennie and her team do such fantastic work with the children at local homeless shelters here in Atlanta.
The kids always look forward to their time with the drawchange art instructors. Being able to express themselves thru art is something these children look forward to each week. The time the volunteers devote to drawchange does not compare to what the children get out of their art sessions. All children need and deserve art, regardless of their situation, and drawchange is helping with that.

6

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I started volunteering with DrawChange back in Septemeber. It has become the highlights of my week. Art has always been a passion of mine along with children. I love seeing the power of art and the effects it has on these children in a positive manner. The enthusiasm in the students during the process and while sharing the creations makes our time valuable. It is a great feeling knowing you have helped instill a calming stress relieving skill in these children whether it be the meditative breathing or the art. They will have a life skill to carry and inspire them through the hills and valleys of life.

5

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I started volunteering with Drawchange at one of the shelters they work with in January, and I look forward to it every week! As an artist and art educator, I strongly believe the power the arts has on children, and Drawchange just seems to get it. Art time at the shelters gives the children there the possibility to express themselves by providing guided expressive arts activities and supplies-- a possibility many children do not receive in schools or home. It's apparent how crucial these opportunities can be as the kids start diving into their artwork, have a chance to feel proud of their pieces at Drawchange art shows and weekly show and tell, and break into smiles as soon as volunteers they know enter. The leaders in the organization truly care about their cause, committing 100%, and all resources go directly to the children. I've really enjoyed getting to know the children that come to Drawchange art-making night at the shelter. I'm excited to see this nonprofit organization grow.
If you are looking for a local nonprofit to volunteer with or donate to, I would highly recommend Drawchange. There are countless ways to contribute time-- office hours at the Goat Farm, working directly with children in art therapy activities at Atlanta shelters, various events like Family Days, student art exhibitions, and even art education outreach trips internationally.

4 Jacqueline33

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I began volunteering in September 2014 and over a year and a half later, going to the shelter every Thursday and now Monday as well, continues to be the highlight of my week. drawchange made more of an impact on me than I could put into words and I'll be forever grateful for the moments working with these children that I will never forget.

5

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering for drawchange since March 2015, and it has been a truly humbling experience. I have taught art to children in the past, but I felt that I was missing something in my work. I felt that bringing art into children's lives should mean more than just an activity to pass the time, like it can be for many children. When I found drawchange, I found a way to positively impact children's lives in a meaningful way. Having been with the organization for a year now, I have seen the benefits of drawchange's empowering curriculum and how it has impacted the lives of the children we work with. Not only is the organization beneficial for the children, but it impacts the volunteers as well! I love giving back to my community and knowing that I'm making a difference in the world. I plan on volunteering for the organization as long as I stay in Atlanta. Drawchange has truly changed my life!

4 Carol216

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I volunteered several years ago for the first time with an event sponsored by Drawchange. I was so impressed with the organization and the spirit and warmth of all of those connected with Drawchange. Since then I have followed many of the projects that Drawchange that has been and is involved with using art and the arts to better children's lives. This past year I decided to sponsor a child at the Fatima School in Cartago, Costa Rico. Let me tell you it is a wonderful experience to receive a letter, perhaps a drawing, and a photograph from the child you sponsor. Drawchange truly changes lives through art.

6

Donor

Rating: 5

I sponsor a child at the Fatima school in Cartago Costa Rica through Drawchange and was able to travel with the organization there in July 2015. I have seen pictures of the school from the first 5 years of the program and how it gradually blossomed in appearance. This year I was able to witness the change myself and see the pride everyone has in their school. I truly believe that bringing art into the school has empowered everyone, from the students to the staff, and there is now hope for a brighter future. Spending time with my sponsor child was icing on the cake. She loves basketball, as do I, and wants to be a doctor.

Check out Drawchange for volunteer opportunities (in Atlanta or another country) or to sponsor a child. Either will be very rewarding.

4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have volunteered with Drawchange for 3 years now and can see the relationship going on for many more to come. I am not all that close to Atlanta and every endeavor requires a lot of time for me. I've helped plan and execute the first 5k, gone to Costa Rica twice (and am about to embark on my third trip) to help out the children of the Los Diques community at Fatima School, worked at a few homeless shelters in Atlanta and helped out with an incredible art auction downtown. I have invested a lot of time, money, travel and sweat into this organization and it's mission. I value my time above most things and would not have given all that I have were it not for the amazing founder of this organization, Jennie Lobato. Getting to know Jennie over the years, it struck me that it was almost impossible to have a conversation about anything without drawchange coming up. As I got to know her, I came to understand that it is because there is almost no separation between the two. She lives and breathes this organization and almost every decision she makes comes with it's impact on her organization coming first. Beyond her commitment, Jennie has proven herself to be a great leader possessing not just the vision for her creation but the ability to carry it out. She is clear in her directions, concise in her requests and always has the volunteers in mind, seconded only by her goals for the children's lives she impacts. Her inclusion is also way above par. Her organization is based on the impacts that art can have on children, BUT you do not have to be an artist to help. A fact that secured my help many times over as I am about as artistic as a chicken scratching for a bug in the dirt. If you have an inclination to make a tangible difference in the life of some children that need it the most, monetarily or by getting your hands dirty, drawchange is a more than worthy choice.

5 Jennifer452

Donor

Rating: 5

Drawchange is an exceptional organization that provides something crucial for kids: hope through art. Art has always been an important part of my life, and I was thrilled to find an organization that cares so much about changing lives through art in many ways. Our family sponsors a wonderful little girl in Costa Rica named Tatiana, and we have built a relationship with her through cards, letters, and drawings. My daughter really enjoys hearing from someone who speaks Spanish, not to mention we all share a love for animals. (Oh, and they both love the color pink.) Hearing how grateful Tatiana was when someone finally sponsored her reaffirmed what I already knew - that we were doing something life-changing for ALL of us. I am really thankful that drawchange has given all of us this opportunity. It feels amazing knowing we're not only providing an impoverished child with money but also hope for a brighter future. Even a little hope goes such a long way to a child who needs it. Jennie is a genuinely compassionate and special person, and you can trust that whatever you donate will be handled responsibly. We love Jennie and drawchange!

4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The first time I volunteered at Drawchange, I noticed that most of the children eagerly express their feelings through the art. Their creativity has a language that portrays the way the see the world. Having the opportunity to connect with them is a blessing because by assisting them with their creative work, I am connecting with my own inner child. I am also impressed to see adults, as well as young volunteers. I enjoy being a part of such a beautiful cause.
--Yvette

5

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Volunteering with drawchange is the highlight of my week! Connecting with these children through art brings out the child in me, too. I am consistently affirmed and inspired by the projects we do together, and you can see a physical transformation in the students from when they enter the art room to when they leave at the end of the session. I believe whole heartedly that empowering artistic expression in these children helps them envision a brighter future: a future they are able to create for themselves, using their intrinsic strength, talent, and imagination. I love this organization, and have the utmost respect for its founder. She is on a mission to change the world, and it's an honor to pitch in.

5

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved with drawchange from its inception. I continue to be impressed with the commitment and compassion it brings to those it serves.

drawchange serves locally with art programs which reach out to underprivileged and homeless children bringing hope through possibility. It serves grieving children with art therapy that enables emotional expression and release.
drawchange also serves globally by taking art supplies, curriculum, food, supplies, and sustainable gardening to impoverished communities in third-world countries.

drawchange art programs are carefully designed to unlock a downtrodden child's imagination by guiding their own natural creativity. From there, a child can imagine a better world for him or herself. And if they can think it, they can make it happen.

I'm so impressed by this young organization. It's well run with a positive, can-do attitude.

I have served on a number of boards, and I have been more honored to be affiliated with an organization.

Keep up the awesome work, drawchange!

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5

Donor

Rating: 5

Drawchange is an praiseworthy organization with true world peace at heart. Their CEO and founder, Jennie Lobato, is intensely committed to providing sustainable projects to children in our world. I have seen Jennie’s passion first-hand and am deeply moved by it. Personally, I am committed to donating to drawchange regularly to ensure they have the funds for success. There are many people in the world who can benefit from a moment in time of expressed creativity. Let’s give drawchange the chance to provide it this for our children and world!

6 marckdorvil

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have been involved with drawchange for the past 2 years. I've volunteered in several capacities including helping start a benefit 5K run, working with children at a local homeless shelter, going to Costa Rica to empower impoverished children, financially contributing monthly and varies other efforts to help drawchange move forward. I was recently approved to become a board member and I'm excited to provide another level of service to this organization. Jennie is incredibly selfless and very passionate about the vision of bringing art to deserving children so they may expand their current outlook on life. I'm immensely proud to be affiliated with both Jennie and drawchange. If you're looking for a worthy cause to donate your time and resources, you've found the right place.

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4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've had the opportunity to volunteer for drawchange a few times now and its been a great experience every time. Its such a worthy cause and Jennie is amazing with the kids. Thank you Jennie for all you do and I can't wait to volunteer again!

4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a Drawchange volunteer, I have been greatly touched by the inner beauty and resiliency of children who are dealing with extreme life challenges (poverty, abusive homes, homelessness, incarcerated parents, etc.). Jennie, the founder and facilitator of Drawchange, works incredibly hard to provide both a creative outlet and loving stability in the lives of these children.

Drawchange also helps to bridge a social gap between "us" and "them," providing opportunities not only for children, but for people in our community to connect together in positive, empowering ways, regardless of age or social and economic status. I love Drawchange and appreciate Jennie immensely for her powerful contribution to Atlanta, as well as to our collective world community.

5 Jeffon S.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This is an incredible organization that does important work in our community. With the average age of the homeless being 9 years old, DrawChange focuses on empowering the ones who need it most, the youth. I've volunteered numerous times and walk away more inspired and motivated to make a lasting difference in our world. Thank you DrawChange for the impact you are making in our world.

3

Board Member

Rating: 4

I have been involved with drawchange since it's inception. I am constantly inspired by the passion behind the organization. I have sat on a number of boards in my life and currently sit on some very large ones and I can unbiasly state that drawchange is a wonderful organization. Keep up the great work!

1 Christina68

Board Member

Rating: 1

I AM A FORMER BOARD MEMBER WHO WAS FORCED OUT BECAUSE I INSISTED ON PROPER FINANCIAL ACCOUNTABILITY. THE CEO / BOARD CHAIR FLATLY REFUSED TO GET PRO BONO ACCOUNTING HELP THAT SHE DESPERATELY NEEDS. THEY DO NOT HAVE ACCURATE AND ORGANIZED FINANCES. I HAVE SERIOUS CONCERNS ABOUT THE USE OF DONATIONS AND ACCOUNTABILITY. THEIR BOARD CHAIR IS ALSO CEO AND SHE HAS A FIDUCIARY CONFLICT OF INTEREST. THE OTHER BOARD MEMBERS ARE ASLEEP AT THE WHEEL. PLEASE ASK FOR THEIR FINANCIALS BEFORE YOU CONSIDER DONATING, JOINING THE BOARD OR APPROVING OF A GRANT.

3

Donor

Rating: 5

Jeannie and Drawchange is one of the most compassionate and reliably run charities I've ever worked with. I'm glad to be a part of it. I would highly commend and recommend Drawchange for anyone who wants to make a difference.

2

Donor

Rating: 5

I've sponsored a child in Costa Rica through draw/change for several years. It has been a most rewarding experience. Jennie Lobato is a wonderful motivator, organizer and all round fabulous person. She keeps us informed of "our" child's activities and we receive cards and notes on a regular basis. For a small amount of money donated each month, outstanding work is being done at Fatima school and the community. The rewards of sponsorship are truly many and life changing for us and for the children.

Sandy W.

1 Louna T.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Drawchange is such an inspirational organization in providing smiles, laughter and compassion to not only the children, but the volunteers/staff, as well. I fell in love with Drawchange and its mission the first time I attended a fundraiser. I, then, found myself committed to sharing my free time at the shelter bringing my teens, whom also dedicate their time being creative with the children.
It is a pleasure to broadcast this wonderful organization! Louna C.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've been volunteering with drawchange for over 3 years. I've taken two trips with them to Costa Rica to volunteer at the Fatima school in Cartago. I've also volunteered at fundraisers, special events and local homeless shelters. All of the events are run professionally and always with the children's best interest at heart. Jennie Lobato, the founder of drawchange, has a genuine compassion for the children. She is selfless and passionate for what she does everyday. If we all had the courage to lead by her example the world would be a better place.

I am now sponsoring a child in Costa Rica and have been donating for over a year. I am very comfortable knowing the money is going to the children and toward their needs. drawchange has clearly communicated how my donation will be used and I believe the founder is very responsible in ensuring the donations are going to each sponsor child.

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1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I volunteered with Drawchange last year in Costa Rica for a week at the Fatima school where we provided a creative outlet to the children. I was inspired by the effort and attention to detail the organization made. I saw the children being uplifted that week and their spirits a little brighter each day we were with them. The organization has nothing but good intentions and truly wants to make the world a better place for these children in need.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The connection and empowerment that is poured into the children by creativity is astonishing. To watch the transformation of each individual by controlling the materials and freely using imagination is undeniably cathartic and therapeutic for these children. This program that Jennie facilitates undoubtably enhances each child's quality of life, outlook, and self-image.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

drawchange is a really awesome idea brought to life. The theory that children need art is supported by the obvious positive impact on the children. I would advise anyone who wants to be involved involved in the community in a fun, meaningful way to volunteer for a drawchange activity. Follow this link for more information on how to become a volunteer with drawchange. CHILDREN NEED ART http://drawchange.org/activities/ :)

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering with Drawchange at homeless shelters in Atlanta for a few months, and have loved every minute of it. We have had groups of up to twelve or so children come to the sessions to work on art projects that founder Jennie Lobato has thoughtfully selected and planned to widen the children's awareness of the world and the possibilities open to them. Jennie has recruited a great group of volunteers who are fun to work with, too! She is very knowledgeable about the struggles of the kids and I have learned a lot from her on how to connect with them and help them understand the lessons such as compassion and self-esteem that underlie the projects we do. It is a testimony to Jennie's great caring and ability to capture their interest that many of them look forward to coming back each week!

1 LDThrower

Advisor

Rating: 5

I am so blown away by this organization and the selflessness of it's founder, Jennie Lobato. I am a firm believer in the power of art therapy and I am glad to know there is an organization who puts this into practice for children who might never have access to, yet deeply need encouragement and intellectual stimulation. Second to shelter and food, I believe that drawchange is meeting vital needs of children without guaranteed homes and stability. Those who volunteer also receive amazing personal and emotional benefits by witnessing the change in these kids.

This organization is working.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I met Jennie a few months ago and already she has changed my life in more ways than are relevant for this review. But most importantly, she introduced me to her NPO Drawchange where I have left every volunteer session with a lighter heart, warm, fuzzy and teary-eyed. The at-risk children she works with seem to leave their cares and worries at the doors and dive into fun self-expressive art projects, tonight's art project was about compassion and it was a beautiful miracle to watch these kids draw what compassion means to them, sound out the word to spell, share their art with each other. The smiles, the giggles and singing are a miracle to witness. Bless all these kids, their families and Jennie and her amazing team of dedicated volunteers.

1 Ashley86

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I. LOVE. DRAWCHANGE. I was previously skeptical about art therapy. I thought it was more of an opinion than anything else. But I couldn't have been more wrong! As a volunteer that actually went to the shelter and used art therapy for at-risk children, it was clear that it has the power to inspire, and actually change lives! At the beginning of each session, some of the newcomers would come in feeling cranky. But by the end of the class, they would be so proud to display their dreams in art form! They would hang it over their beds at night so that they could look forward to accomplishing their goals.

The founder, Jennie Lobato, is probably the nicest and most hardest working person you'll ever meet! She makes volunteering so easy. It's easy to become discouraged by the red tape surrounding some charities, but Jennie makes this process simple and hassle-free by quickly responding to each applicant. She inspires me to help people and be a good person. Thank you Jennie!

Kimie C.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

When I first volunteered for drawchange, it was mainly to add a piece to my graphic design portfolio which sounds awful but it is the truth. Then, Jennie, the founder, asked me to work with her on the children's magazine "Art & Pinta Say 'Let's Create!'" and I became more involved in caring about the things that drawchange does for children. I fully believe and support the good that drawchange does. As an artist, I know how important art is in my life and I see how drawchange brings art into the lives of children who need it most. I always pick this foundation as my first non-profit to give my time or monetary support to when I have it. I hope that drawchange keeps growing to help out more and more children around the world.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

What Drawchange has become is a direct reflection of its founder, Jennie Lobato. I've known Jennie my entire life and have known her to be selfless, dedicated, and always working towards a higher purpose. So could it be any wonder that the altruistic, forward thinking, and above all life changing organization she's created could be anything less than the standard that any non profit organization could possibly hope to be? In the face of this gold standard, this is a rhetorical question indeed!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am proud to say that I am a continuous volunteer for drawchange. This was my second year traveling to Costa Rica to empower the Fatima kiddies. I can honestly say that this organization is truly a motivating factor to make a difference in the world. Drawchange is led by Jennie Lobato, an amazing human being and has proven from time to time, that the organization's work has led to outstanding results. Traveling to Costa Rica a second time, I saw the impact we have had on these children. Our team worked extremely hard and we will never forget our experiences that has shaped our newly founded ideology of the significance of art and volunteerism. Year three, here I come!

Previous Stories
1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I had the pleasure and honor to work with drawchange! I volunteered for the 'Art Beyond Borders' international trip to Fatima School in Cartago, Costa Rica. Our mission was to empower children through art. Every day, it was a new experience with the children. They are so wonderful, despite their current conditions. We created art projects, played with them and talked to them about themselves, their families and their ambitions. The staff at Fatima School is truly dedicated to the children of Fatima School and their dedication greatly encouraged us to never give up! My time in Costa Rica with the children was unforgettable and above all, a humbling experience. I learned that art truly creates empowerment for children so they can visualize their life in different perspective.

catssite

Donor

Rating: 5

Have donated to this organization, sponsored children and been on a mission trip with them to Costa Rica. An excellent organization

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1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have traveled on a mission trip with Drawchange. I can attest that every dime of donated money went to the kids in need that it was intended. It is a reputable charitable organization dedicated to helping children around the world tap into their creative nature.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am new to Drawchange and look forward to becoming more involved as soon as I can. Art and children hold a dear spot in my heart as they do in Jennie Lobato's as evidenced by her tireless work. I love to see the pictures of the trips and the children's smiling faces. Art not only brings smiles and hope to these children, it nourishes their minds. Art is an important tool that can be used to help raise these children above the status they are born into. I help spread the word as much as possible because I believe Drawchange is doing good work, and I feel strongly about children and art.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I traveled to Costa Rica with a team of DrawChange volunteers. Our leader, Jennie Lobato, was amazing. She organized the entire trip and has an excellent relationship with the staff at the school where we worked with the children. There were 10 volunteers who participated and the teamwork was incredible...no other group of mostly strangers could possibly be as effective. We all realized that this effort was for the children and that was our only agenda. It was good to hear Jennie say that in this, her fourth year, she sees hope on the faces of the children that they can rise up from their impoverished beginnings and create whatever they want in their lives. It was a pleasure and an honor to be on this DrawChange trip. I look forward to next year.

Previous Stories
1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a supporter of DrawChange through financial sponsorship of a child in Costa Rica. Jeenie Lobato, the founder of DrawChange is passionate about her work and loves all the children she helps. She is tireless in her work, as the only full time staff member. I do not know how she juggles all the balls she has in motion! Jeenie takes art to children in impoverished communities in Atlanta and Costa Rica and plans to start a program in Ethiopia next year. Her belief is that by learning to create through art that these children can learn that they have the power break out of their circumstances and change their lives for the better. They can create whatever they put their mind to do. I applaud her and her efforts and am happy to play a small part in her mission.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I had the opportunity to volunteer for drawchange and it has been a great experience all around for me. What drew me to drawchange was the selfless vision and the passion with which the program is run. A great organization!

1 Linda194

Donor

Rating: 5

I am privileged to sponsor a child in Costa Rica through the Drawchange program. This child has multiple medical issues and is unable to attend school on a regular basis, but has a lovely spirit and I enjoy receiving updates from her mother as to her life and her condition. Jennie is gracious enough to pass along these updates and offers to translate for me. It takes so little to make such a big difference. I am so proud that my son is making the trip to volunteer at the Fatima School this summer and I am planning to send along a small gift for him to take to Yailyn for me in the hope that it will brighten her day a bit. The mission of Drawchange is unique as it sparks creativity in children who don't necessarily see a lot of beauty in their every day surroundings. It teaches them that there are opportunities for kindness and generosity no matter what their circumstance. The outreach to not only the children of Costa Rica, but to the homeless shelters and other venues in Atlanta and other urban areas offers the chance for budding artists to expand their horizons and to escape into the world of possibilities limited only by their own imaginations. Jennie is a marvel and her volunteers go above and beyond to make a difference in the lives of so many. They are to be commended and congratulated for giving so selflessly and so effectively. I hope the word gets out and the donations flood in to this worthy organization so that they can continue to do such fabulous work.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Last year's trip with the drawchange team was thoroughly eye-opening and unequaled to anything I had ever experienced in my country before. Here, the Los Diques community is widely known as a place to stay away from "if you know what's good for you." I was scared.

After our visit, I sorely felt the overwhelming silence of new found ignorance. To know that I am a fortunate human being, living in comfortable conditions which allow me to sit here typing this into a computer, is worlds different to BEING THERE and SEEING what I had only previously known.

These people do GOOD work and if they can brighten up the lives of these children, if only for a few hours a day, that is already invaluable.

The core of drawchange lies in Jennie's honest-to-goodness passion for the empowerment of these children and the embellishing of the environments they live in. She is genuinely welcoming, kind and encouraging.

There was never a moment when I didn't feel valuable, appreciated and capable of accomplishing something, and there is no doubt that she elevates these children into feeling the same way.

2 Jarrett R.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

When you work with drawchange, there is never any doubt that all the thoughts are in the absolute correct place. Their mission to provide children with art supplies is kept at the core of all the efforts they make. The transparency lets you know exactly what is happening and being accomplished. A newsworthy and word-of-mouth appropriate non-profit group.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I had the wonderful opportunity to work with drawchange and it's awesome founder Jennie Lobato on an exploratory journey to Ethiopia. Witnessing it first hand, Jennie's passion for the arts and empowering children is extraordinary. I look forward to working with drawchange in the near future especially the partnership(s) in Ethiopia. It was one of the most rewarding experiences I've had in a very long time! Way to go drawchange!!!!!!! Keep up the great work!!!!!!!! :-)

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Drawchange is one of my favorite nonprofit organizations largely because of the compassion of it's founder and CEO Jennie Lobato.I had the wonderful experience of traveling to Costa Rica to work with the students at the Fatima School. Being a retired educator it was great to once again have the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of children. I highly reccommend Drawchange and look forward to working with them in the future.

1 John92

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Drawchange, under the leadership of Jennie Lobato, has been a great influence in my life, in my church's life, in the local community and the world. I am very pleased to be affiliated with them and to support them. They are kind, positive and helpful. They bring art, art supplies, love and hope to those in the world who have so little. I wholeheartedly support them and the good work that they do!

BarbaraHuffman

Board Member

Rating: 5

It would be impossible to share the difference drawchange makes in the lives of poor children in a short statement like this. I have participated in multiple drawchange projects both locally and on the world stage - and it has changed my life. It is not what WE do that makes the difference, but the love the CHILDREN share with us! We take them art experience, art instruction, and the ability to be left alone with great supplies to create whatever they want to create. Doing this, they learn that they can create beauty in their world, that they can be in control of at least a part of their world - their creativity. Hopefully, this will cause a sense of empowerment to be fostered in the children, and they will learn that they have the power to break the cycle of poverty and help themselves and their family members in multiple ways. Drawchange is an excellent organization, my favorite non-profit, and one that deserves to receive recognition and kudos for the great work they are doing in the world.

Previous Stories
1

Board Member

Rating: 5

Drawchange is an organizaton that is committed to raising up the world's underprivileged children by allowing them to learn about and express creativity through art experience. In this day of schools shutting down their art programs instead of growing them, children need exposure to creativty more than ever. I have traveled with drawchange to Costa Rica twice and hope to join them this coming fall on their trip to an orphanage outside Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Moreover, I have worked with drawchange right here in the United States and seen the sparkle in the children's eyes as they created in peace and an atmostphere of total acceptance, and then were encouraged to be proud of their achievements. Our work comes from the heart and so positively affects the hearts of the children who receive from drawchange. The adult givers benefit as much from drawchange as the intended recipients: the children.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

drawchange sponsors a trip each year to visit impoverished children, and bring to them an experience of creating art and enjoying team recreation. This year it was to Cartago, Costa Rica, where 400 children, who live in a shanty town, participated in their program. Additionally, drawchange coordinates sponsorships of individual children, giving them the chance to afford a few of the niceties that would otherwise be out of their reach. I partipated in this year's trip, and was astonished by the impact such a simple gesture has on these children.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

When I first applied to help provide Illustrations for Drawchange INC's magazine to help raise funds, I honestly did not know what this organization did. When I went to their website and got the whole perspective on what they do along with the services they are providing to children and the communities they live in, I was touched. With the recent cut backs on art programs in the world today, Drawchange INC's mission to bring art to these communities that lack art within the community is a huge feat that is not easy to do. The great thing about Drawchange INC is it doesn't just stop at bringing art supplies and art projects to communities, Drawchange INC also works with other organizations to bring food, shelter and other needs to communities that need it in it's home town of Atlanta. Drawchange INC is such a great non profit that if it had more exposure to more people, I think it would be a stronger non-profit and be able to reach more communities that need this service to help make more communities stronger with the power of art. The CEO of the non profit group, Jennie Lobato, is a great leader, very passionate about her work and is a pleasure to work with. When I volunteered my artistic skills, she was always kind and provided me with her honest opinion, but always took my knowledge about how to make the artwork work for her cause with an open ear. I believe the world will always need art and having Drawchange INC around to bring art into communities that need this crucial form of expression within it is a must need for the world today.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Drawchange is inspiring children to see a promising future for themselves while developing their self-esteem and creativity. As a volunteer on two trips to Costa Rica, I have seen the joy in the children's hearts as they explore, create, and express their personal visions. I wholeheartedly support the mission of this great organization!

2 Winston W.

Donor

Rating: 5

Drawchange is an amazing organization. I've had the pleasure of working closely with the founder of the organization "Jennie Lobato" for many years. She is a truly an inspiration to everyone around her. She took Drawchage from a thought to selfless staple that truly gives back to the community. I'm so proud to apart of this amazing movement.

2

Board Member

Rating: 5

Until I volunteered with drawchange I didn't truly understand the impact art could have on children. I was at an event where none of the children spoke English, and although it was difficult to get the kids to understand the steps of the project, as I demonstrated each step, their eyes lit up and they followed along. They worked together, and the English language wasn't necessary. Art is a language we can all understand, and it brings us together no matter the culture, economics or language barriers. drawchange is truly a life changing non-profit for children and I am honored to be a part of it. This is the type of business we need to keep alive, to keep hope and dreams alive for our children who have nothing else except their own hopes and dreams.

1 Dale4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It wasn't until I went to Costa Rica with drawchange that I experienced the full impact of what bringing art experiences to children can do. Individual self-worth and confidence grew from day to day and even project to project. It was inspiring to see the abundance of happiness and gratitude a little crayon and glitter brought. All children need art to grow and express themselves - drawchange just brings it to those that aren't fortunate enough to have exposure to it. Such a worthwhile concept from such a loving organization.

1 Jennie L.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

helping kids through art is so much fun, the smiles and ideas that were introduced to young minds was incredibly breathtaking. it also helped me with great ideas through art.

2 Christian W.

Board Member

Rating: 5

Great organization with a wonderful mission. Up...up...up...we go!!!!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've been a drawchange virtual volunteer since September 2011. So far, it's been a tremendous experience. I started off as a researcher, putting together a paper about the therapeutic effects of art for underprivileged children; and I am currently assisting Jennie (founder, CEO) in organizing data for the Costa Rican Child Sponsorship Program. I enjoy working with Jennie very much. She always responds to emails and is very precise in delegating assignments.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I found Drawchange through VolunteerMatch.org in February 2011, drawn to their mission and belief that art is absolutely crucial to one's well-being, especially in children. It's been a great experience. Jennie (the founder + CEO) is a wonderful person to work with-- intelligent, friendly, always willing to help me out with my questions whenever I have them. She also makes a point of including me in as many things as possible to keep me informed and aware of where current (and future) projects are headed. Regardless of the specific tasks I'm working on for Drawchange (which range from research that support grant proposals as well as international trips/events, contacting prospective volunteers, and miscellaneous admin support), Jennie always emphasizes how important it is that they're completed to allow the organization to focus on its goal: providing art to kids who need it most. It's this that makes me feel like an integral part of drawchange & that I'm helping them make a difference, however small my part may be.

Review from Guidestar