Art Expression Inc.

Homeless Children’s Education Fund:
Art Expression programming in homeless housing agencies

Youth artwork created for We Live Here Too exhibit, Fall 2016

Since 2013, Art Expression Inc. has partnered with the Homeless Children’s Education Fund (HCEF) to create programs focused on HCEF’s mission to advance the education of children and youth experiencing homelessness, guiding them to be productive, empowered citizens. As a national model for addressing the educational needs of unstably-housed children and youth, HCEF leads a collaborative effort among regional partners by providing educational programs and services in Allegheny County and advocating for policy and system improvement.

Current and past shelter partners include:

Auberle’s 412 Youth Zone

Casa San José

Family Links

Family Promise of SW PA


Light of Life Rescue Mission

Salvation Army

Sister’s Place

Sojourner MOMS

Women’s Center and Shelter

Womanspace East

A portable space heater made from clay flower pots, nuts, bolts, and spacers. The terra-cotta pots provided metaphors for change, growth and the cycle of life. They were decorated with Zentangles, a stress-reducing, meditative technique used to promote mindfulness and calm.
In an area shelter, a young girl was excited to learn “gradients” (the technique of blending and shading colors together to go from light to dark). She enjoyed creating her piece in the manner of Van Gogh’s “Sunflowers.”
A group project focused on homes and families, created at an area shelter. The students discussed the things that make a house into a home and the different types of families. Then as a group, the students created a mural depicting a family and a home, along with wreaths to hang on the doors of rooms in the shelter to make their rooms into homes.