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“Painting,” once said Pablo Picasso, “is just another way of keeping a diary.”

And so it was that a group of Eastern Kentucky University students and staff, joined by the Artfully Yours art studio, helped 19 residents of Kenwood Nursing Home enjoy a memorable activity on Thursday, Feb. 15.

Artfully Yours staff gave the EKU Student Life and First Year Experience contingent and the Kenwood residents a blank canvas and the tools to paint a scene of two birds on a tree branch overlooking a sunset.

Rebecca Wilson, coordinator of student activities, was one of two EKU staff members who helped facilitate and plan the event.

“We normally just bring Artfully Yours to campus to work with students,” Wilson noted, “but Dylan Bogard (coordinator of service at EKU) approached me with the opportunity, and I can say it turned out extremely well.”

This marked the first time that Student Life and First Year Experience partnered with members of the community for an activity that also served as a service opportunity.

“The students enjoyed painting with the Kenwood residents, and we know that the residents had an amazing time,” Bogard said. “We had students who enjoyed the overall experience more than receiving a painting, and they gave their paintings to the residents. You could tell it meant a lot to the residents who didn’t finish their painting or had trouble starting.”

One of the students to make the trip, Caitlynn Klass, a forensic science major, wished she could have spent more time at the event. “I had a ton of fun, and I hope our office goes back to volunteer with more programs in the future.”