Letter from the CEO




Dear Art Room Aid Project Owner:


Blick launched Art Room Aid (ARA) in 2009 as a way to support learning in classrooms, schools, and other creative spaces across the country. At that time, we saw ARA as a way for educators and artists to reach out to arts advocates who shared the same goals and dreams for teaching art to children and youth. At its core, ARA strived to provide the tools to share goals and funding needs in a simple, uncomplicated way.


Since that time, arts advocates have given more than $270,000 to ARA projects, and we believe the program has filled a need. However, ARA has not been as successful in meeting its engagement goals as we had hoped. What’s more, the software and administrative costs associated with managing the program have increased to a point where it is no longer financially possible for Blick to continue its support.


It is with regret that I tell you we will be decommissioning ARA by May 31, 2018. This decision wasn’t reached quickly or easily. I thank you for your participation, and hope you found the program useful in raising funds for the important work you do with our children and in our communities. As ARA winds down, here are a few key dates to keep in mind:


  • January 22, 2018 is the final date to create new projects.
  • February 28, 2018 is the final date for accepting contributions to new and existing projects.
  • April 30, 2018 is the final date to spend funds collected for your projects.
  • The ARA website will be deactivated on May 31, 2018.

As a company, Blick will continue to collect funds via our “coffee can” when customers check out at DickBlick.com. If you are requesting a donation or assistance for an event, please contact us at circulation@dickblick.com. I also highly recommend donorschoose.org as a place to post your projects and reach out to donors.


Blick continues to invest in the arts and educational programs by giving hundreds of thousands of dollars each year in monetary donations, products, and other resources. We also support the NAEA and state art education organizations, the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, and the Council for Art Education (Youth Art Month). Our financial and product contributions to artist organizations, art guilds, teacher associations, youth groups, and scholastic, collegiate, and professional art shows will continue, and we hope to be able to do even more in the future.


Again, thank you for your participation in ARA. I wish you all the best as you continue to teach, create, and promote the arts in our schools and communities.


Regards,

Bob Buchsbaum
CEO, Blick Art Materials and Utrecht Art Supplies



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