Light & Color Arts
Jody Crimi

Serving Youth & Syrian Refugees in San Diego

I’m passionate about bringing light and color into lives that are dark and grey because of trauma. After spending nearly 20 years in youth ministry, I’m especially burdened for teens in desperate need of hope in our disconnected and broken society. This hope will come as they experience the unconditional love of their Creator, relationships with adults who believe in them, and tools to cope with their overwhelming emotions. This is why I’m committed to creating environments that will provide these experiences and give them a safe place to express themselves.

This passion is fueled by the love of God in my life along with my own experience of healing through art and the communities that have nurtured this (like The Grove). I’m also inspired by the training I received from First Aid Arts, an organization I was introduced to during the summer of 2015.

My vision for this arts ministry extends beyond local youth, but also reaches out to refugees (both here and in the Middle East). Not only do I plan to offer them art resources and programs, I also want to use art to share their stories. In March, I facilitated the First Aid Arts program with Syrian refugee youth in Lebanon and witnessed how great is the need for hope* in their lives. To learn more about my recent trip to Lebanon and this work, please visit First Aid Arts.

Why Art for Youth?

Refugees greatly benefit from having creative tools like color, movement and sound to express what can’t be put in words. This is because research has shown that the impact of trauma on the brain indicates a need for healing to occur in both the left and right sides of the brain. This is why art makes a powerful difference. Additionally, the arts-based activities provided in the First Aid Arts Toolkit are intentionally designed to help in the development of identity, emotional regulation and healthy interpersonal relationships. Physical wounds need proper care to heal. What may be less obvious is that emotional wounds do too. Beating a drum or coloring a picture brings healing care to a wounded heart. 

Not only can art be part of the healing process but it can also provide common ground for connections to be made; with people of differing cultures and with God. It’s a great tool for overcoming obstacles and getting to the heart! 

The needs and opportunities for this work are great! My mission, to be a curator of experiences that increase Love, Beauty, Truth and Hope in the presence of pain and suffering, will be a lifelong project. But the work will be done one step at a time and your support makes a huge difference! It will help me: provide free programs for disadvantaged youth; develop resources and training for leaders working with refugees; and bring the stories of those who are suffering to people who can hear and help. I desire to be part of God’s restoration of brilliance in the world. Will you join me?

 *In Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, one definition of hope is: “that in which one confides or to which he flees for refuge”.



If you are a previous YFC donor of Jody's and would like to support her new Light & Color ministry, please use the Paypal links below or download the PDF donation form to mail in your gift today. 

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To donate by mail, please download The Grove Donation Form.

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We're here to be light...

“Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven. Matthew 5:14-16 The Message