DC teen’s group helps create art for ‘Cards for Hospitalized Kids’

No artistic skills? No problem. That’s what one D.C. teen wants you to know if you want to volunteer making cards for hospitalized children.

“Anybody can become a volunteer, anybody can just share their art with us because everyone has potential,” said Edie Young, 16, a sophomore at Jackson-Reed High School in D.C.

Young started her organization We Are Artistic about four years ago to provide an outlet to young artists. Last year, she started partnering with the organization Cards for Hospitalized Kids.

Jen Rubino, who is now a student studying international relations at George Washington University, started the cardmaking and delivery organization about 10 years ago.

“Back when I was in high school, my own experience in the hospital really inspired me to want to help others, and it started really small. At first, it was mainly just in the community. But it really took off really quickly — and is now nationwide,” Rubino said.

Rubino’s organization has distributed more than 500,000 cards since its start in 2012.

“Even though it is such a small act of kindness, it really makes such a world of a difference. Some of these kids keep their cards for years and go on to volunteer for us,” Rubino said.

Want to help out? We Are Artistic is holding cardmaking workshops at the Upper Marlboro Branch Library on June 17 and July 15 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. and at the Greenbelt Farmers Market on July 9 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. 

High school students can earn community service hours for attending the events.

Young’s organization will provide all of the materials. Those interested in making cards just need to show up and get creative.

“Art can really uplift someone and you don’t have to be our artistic, you just have to be willing to write an uplifting message,” Young said.

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Valerie Bonk

Valerie Bonk started working at WTOP in 2016 and has lived in Howard County, Maryland, her entire life. She's thrilled to be a reporter for WTOP telling stories on air. She works as both a television and radio reporter in the Maryland and D.C. areas. 

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