Friday, December 11, 2015

Beauty Queens and Artists Creating Compassion for Special Needs

Miss Florida Teen USA delegates and “world-renowned” speed artist Michael Israel create compassion for individuals with special needs through an appearance at Unicorn Children’s Foundation on Friday, December 11, 2015. 

Miss Florida Teen USA Gracie Smith and the newly crowned Miss Boca Raton Teen USA Olivia Occhigrossi, Miss Delray Beach Teen USA 2016 spoke with students at Unicorn Village Academy about celebrating their differences, interests and abilities to help encourage development of empathy and increased compassion towards children and adolescents with special needs. Ms. Smith and Ms. Occhigrossi helped students prepare Creating Compassionate Children TM toolkits that will be distributed to 500 preschool and elementary school classrooms to break down myths and fears before they develop into stereotypes and stigmas which ultimately result in isolation and bullying. These kits provide a character education curriculum to help teachers and students understand that some of their peers may think, communicate, and learn differently. 

Following, Michael Israel, who has shared limelight with celebrities, CEO’s of Fortune 500 companies, and world leaders alike, shared his talent with these same special needs students as they create a unique one-of-a-kind piece of art. Passion for his work, and compassion for a cause fuse together for an energy that begs enlightenment and understanding on a new plateau that ventures beyond the traditional and accepted styles and “norms” of art. 

This event is the first in a series of events leading up to a coordinated Read for Acceptance day to be scheduled for April 1, 2016.

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