Art gallery helps connect homeless people to healthcare, nonprofits to funds and platform

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) – As Eden Village continues to build tiny homes and a community center for the chronically homeless, community organizations are coming together to help fund the project.

On Friday, the Wilma Daniels Gallery and the Wilson Center hosted a gallery featuring Cape Fear Community College faculty and local artists. According to Professor Sharon Wozniak Spencer, 100% of the CFCC silent coin auction commission will go to Eden Village.

“I’m very happy that the Wilson Center and the Wilma Daniels Gallery did it, because they are also giving their order to Eden Village,” she continued.

Spencer has worked within the homeless community for years, even featuring many people who have since found homes in her portraits. Its objective: to humanize the men and women living on the street and to share their story.

“And the one thing that I always wanted to take away from all the paintings was to show the beauty and the dignity of each one,” she said.

Shawn Hayes of Eden Village says the money helps fund construction while raising awareness of their mission: to build a city where no one sleeps outside.

“The most important thing this is going to give us is the opportunity to tell the story of Eden Village to someone who hasn’t heard it yet,” Hayes explained.

While the gallery will close its doors in September, it is forging lasting partnerships with the association. CFCC Dental, Nursing, Occupational Therapy and Honors students will visit the Tiny Houses as part of their curriculum, offering their services to those in need.

According to Hayes, “Those currently living on the streets will not only come to a home they can live in, but they will have the support services they need to be able to thrive. »

“It’s a way of life beyond the show,” Spencer said.

According to Hayes, these aren’t the only funds Eden Village receives. Lawmakers just approved a $500,000 grant for the nonprofit, helping them build their community center debt-free. Construction should start in the coming weeks.

William E. Bennett