Honors Course Sends Art Supplies to Ghana

By Caitlin Burns | June 2, 2021


Collage of three photos of donating and receiving the tote bags

Adjunct Professor of Education Linda Ruth Paskell ’81, ’96MEd met Nanna Kittoe Manful and was introduced to her organization, Obaatan, during a service trip to Ghana 10 years ago for her photography service project, Color of Poverty.

That relationship has evolved—so much so that when the fall 2020 semester went online, Paskell brought together Obaatan, School for the Deaf in Ghana, and Arts for the Nations in Denver, Colorado to create a project that would engage her students and bring art supplies to elementary aged children to the School for the Deaf. For her students in the Color of Poverty Honors course in the fall, they assisted by painting the tote bags that supplies for each child would be sent in as part of their semester projects.

“I wanted to keep away from words because of the language barrier,” said Hannah McGinnis ’21 about her tote bag. After sealing them into boxes in December, the bags finally made it to the school on April 14. “It made me really happy to see the little boy in the photo holding my bag. He was making the ‘I love you’ sign in sign language. Now, they’ll have something fun to do.”

The Color of Poverty course focused on global issues, especially those that face women and children, and how art can impact it.

“Art brings joy, healing and hope,” said Paskell. “Our mission last semester was accomplished!”