Kiawah Island Digest June 2018 - Page 8

8 May 2017 June 2018 5 Kiawah Art and House Tour Benefits Local Organizations You probably noticed the signs back in April when Arts, etc. held its 18th annual Kiawah Art and House Tour. You may even have been one of those enjoying the tour. But how much do you know about the organization that sponsors the tour and the impact the tour’s proceeds have had over the past 18 years? Arts, etc. is an organization of Kiawah and Cassique women committed to supporting the arts in the greater Charleston area. Founded in 2001 as Gibbes, etc., an auxiliary group of the Gibbes Museum, it has raised more than $1.2 million for the museum in Gibbes memberships and through proceeds from the tour. Reorganized as Arts, etc. in 2014, the group became independent and expanded its support to include visual, performing, and literary arts. It has since donated $326,450 (this total includes proceeds of $88,200 from the 2018 tour) to provide these experiences to the youth of Johns and Wadmalaw Islands. This year, the funds will be divided among the following organizations: The Gibbes Museum “It Starts with a Dot” program, Engaging Creative Minds’ STEAM camp, Chamber Music Charleston’s Classical Kids Concerts, College of Charleston’s Camp Inspire, Ballet Evolution’s performances and lectures/demonstrations, College of Charleston School of the Arts Children's Opera, and The Halsey Institute of Arts Contemporary South photography project. To learn more about Arts, etc. and its impact within the local community, visit Kiawah Cares Names Ruth Flynn 2018 Volunteer of the Year five children and a nearly full-time job. Ruth practiced law for over 30 years before opening her own practice. Her law career focused on federal tax law and included helping families create and administer charitable foundations. When she retired two years ago, naturally she chose Kiawah as her permanent home. Ruth looked for ways to volunteer with her new-found freedom. Her first venture was in Kathmandu, Nepal, to volunteer at local schools and health centers for underserved children. While she very much enjoyed the experience, she realized that children living on the Sea Islands faced many of the same issues as the children in Nepal. Kiawah Cares would like to offer warm congratulations to the 2018 Volunteer of the Year, Ruth Flynn! Ruth is an incredible woman who has had an interesting life. She became the first female mayor in Lake County, Illinois at just 33. During her term as mayor, she attended law school in Chicago. She graduated third in her class, despite having Now she enjoys being part of the many volunteer opportunities available through Kiawah Cares. As she says, "I'm always aware that I am getting much more out of helping others than I am giving to them. It is a priviledge to be in a position to give and so satisfying to feel you might even be making a small difference." Thank you, Ruth, for your dedication to improving lives on the Sea Islands!