By Ashkan Motamedi
For the Diamondback
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected families and restaurants in Prince George’s County. But thanks to a virtual art sale, two organizations – Greater Riverdale Cares and Route One Communities Care – are giving back to support them.
By art sale, which lasts until next Sunday, artists bring their work to sell. Sales procedures are then used to purchase meals from local restaurants to donate to local families in need.
The website currently has 43 pieces for sale and has raised $3,490 from 27 artworks sold, as of December 13.
“I think it’s a great initiative. It’s a great thing this group of residents have come up with to support both our local restaurants and the residents who are struggling right now,” said Mayor Patrick Wojahn.
Wojahn said he bought an artwork himself to help with the initiative.
“I saw a piece of art that caught my eye and thought I would help support the cause,” Wojahn said.
Artist David Brosch, who came up with the idea for the initiative and helped sell five of his own pieces, said he believes the art sale brings positivity at a time when many many residents and business owners were struggling.
“It was really a good thing,” Brosch said of the initiative. “With all the negative things going on… [we’ve] there’s something really positive going on that makes things a little easier.
Local restaurants supported by the initiative include four in the Riverdale area, two in Hyattsville and four in College Park.
Jennifer Willett is a volunteer with the initiative, and her career in digital marketing has seen her help build the art sale’s website and a GoFundMe page for Greater Riverdale Cares and Route One Communities Care.
Willett said $10 funds a meal, so if the initiative raises $100, it funds 10 meals which are then distributed to 10 different people.
“What we’re trying to do is, again, support local restaurants, but also use those restaurants and the funds that we give to restaurants to then feed people who are facing food insecurity,” Willett said.
Looking ahead, Brosch and other organizers hope to hold another art sale soon, and Brosch said he is looking to involve more artists and sell different types of work.
As the pandemic continues, more money will need to be raised to help continue feeding struggling local families and keeping local restaurants open for business.
“Next time what we’re going to do is we’re going to open it up to other artists, other…artisans,” Brosch said, adding that he thinks the next sale of art could take place in the coming months.