Q & A With Microgrant Recipients Emilia & Kyra


With their award 15 year old microgrant recipients Kyra & Emilia taught art classes to children at LA Family Housing which serves homeless & low-income families in Los Angeles. 

  1. How many people participated in your project? We have had many people participate in our art classes since we began teaching in 2013.  After receiving the Karma for Cara microgrant in 2016, we have had a total of about 40 students participate in our art classes.
  2. How many hours did you and other participants spend on the project? We have taught six classes at L.A. Family Housing since receiving the grant.  We spent three hours buying the supplies, four hours creating the lesson plans, and at least two hours per day when teaching (approximately 20 hours overall).  Other than purchasing supplies, we anticipate the second semester of our project this year to be about the same.
  3. What did you learn from this experience? In our experience teaching art and running our program, we have learned many valuable lessons about working with children, teaching art, and managing our project in general.  Many times, we have had to adjust lessons for the various types of students to best accommodate their maturity level, emotional needs, and work style. We have learned how to successfully manage a class of children ranging from ages eight to twelve, including finding ways to keep them engaged. For example, our teaching style is interactive. Throughout a lesson, we ask many questions to involve the students so they maintain interest and enthusiasm. This has taught us to be flexible and adaptable to the diverse situations we encounter. Additionally, running this program has taught us how to be effective leaders, organized project managers.
  4. How will your project continue having an impact in the future? We will continue to use the supplies purchased with the Karma for Cara funding during future lessons at the shelter, enabling us to share the relief and joy of art, in addition to fascinating techniques, with more students.  KEM Creative is also looking to broaden its reach by expanding to a second facility in Los Angeles.  We are in the process of training student teachers to assist in facilitating our lessons that will allow KEM to host classes more frequently and teach a wider range of students.  We have seen the transformative power that art has on our students, impacting not only their artistic ability, but their focus and confidence as well.
  5. Overall, summarize how your project was completed and how you think it went. After watching the students react to their improved art and seeing them develop new perspectives on the world, we are positive that our project has brought a sense of respite, happiness, and thoughtfulness into their lives.
  6. How was the Karma for Cara microgrant helpful in the completion of your
    project? The Karma for Cara microgrant allowed us to purchase additional supplies for our
    lessons.  Without these supplies, the classes would not have been able to continue.The new materials enhanced the students’ experiences and the overall quality of our lessons.  For example, instead of paper, they now have access to canvases.  The Karma for Cara microgrant provided us with art supplies for our art classes, allowing us to continue our program and focus on expanding it.  Through the microgrant, we have purchased supplies that we will use in our lessons during the school year and as well as at an upcoming summer camp.