If you want more kindness in the world, put it there.

Art for Shelter Residents

What's Your 50 art show

 This might be the most rewarding art show of 2019.  A local artist, Pauline Rakis, liked the idea of GIVING 50.  She knew that art can make such a big impact in someone's life and home.   So she reached out to 15 local artists, collected over 147 pieces of original art and pottery and held two art shows for the residents of 2 shelters in Bethesda and Gaithersburg, MD.   

The shelter residents were so humbled and happy by the invitation to attend an art exhibit held in an empty retail space in downtown Bethesda.    They were each encouraged to pick a piece of pottery as well as a painting to take home with them.  We were hoping they would find a piece that spoke to them.   And boy, did the art speak to them!

One man  was  immediately drawn to a painting of the Washington Monument.   I'll never forget his enormous smile and giddy excitement when he explained to me why it spoke to him.  Not only was he patriotic because he'd been in the military, but he  enjoys visits with his daughter who works in D.C.  They love to walk around the monuments as often as possible.  So, he couldn't wait to give her the painting as a present to let her know how much he loves her and cherishes their walks.  

An older African American woman had hardly stepped in to the art exhibit when she spotted the painting of a field of purple iris.   She turned to me and said that her mom and aunt really loved the color purple.  And her dad would always were something purple to church on Sundays.  She said the color reminds her of FREEDOM.  

Just when I thought there couldn't be any more connections to the art, a very young woman approached me with the painting of a field and farm.   She said that it reminded her of her childhood home in Wisconsin that she left just two years ago.   She raced up to her shelter apartment to hang it on her wall, take a picture of it with her phone and and come back to show me.   She was glowing with happiness.   

The pottery was also a huge hit, not only because it was beautifully hand crafted, but it provided a much needed new  bowl, plate or coffee mug.

Pauline Rakis         Silver Spring,  MD 


Montgomery County places where you can help:


Make Meals, Set-up Apartments, Throw a Party!

You don’t have to quit your day job to make a difference in your community.  This organization makes it easy to get involved.  LOVE decorating?! Set up a home for a family starting over. 

LOVE to COOK?! Cook recovered food for shelter residents.  

We offer one-time projects and ongoing opportunities.

Let’s DO KindWorks together!


Donate those gently used bras:

Help provide new and gently used bras and much needed hygiene products to girls and women experiencing homelessness, impoverishment and distress to stand tall with dignity.  


Birthday Cakes 4 Free

Bakes, decorates, and delivers free birthday cakes to financially and socially disadvantaged children and seniors.  You can make birthday cakes at home that will be delivered to children.

If I cannot do great things, I can do small things in a great way.  

- Martin Luther King Jr.