After our school program students can name local eating disorder recovery resources.
I love the sudden feeling of connection. The one where you're mid sentence sharing with someone and suddenly you see the other person’s eyes soften, the corners of their mouth create a smirk, while simultaneously everything around you slows down. Then, your brain registers, “They get me.”
I have had this experience with the students in the Rewrite Beautiful programs. There is a distinct stillness that comes over the room when I talk about seeing people’s beauty for their creativity, kindness, and strength. Whether it’s a group of 10 year olds or 30 year olds, everyone wants to live in a world where we look beyond the surface. A world where we take more time to notice people’s character rather than their physique. Where we spend more time admiring our own actions and less time criticizing the flesh and bones that house our soul.
This concept is something Rewrite Beautiful has been reinforcing through our message of creativity, kindness and strength since its inception in 2010. Rewriting the definition of beauty is an ongoing effort-just this year we educated 1,400 students. However, it takes great time and energy to maintain the thousands of connections we have cultivated. The effort and resources needed to maintain and grow our organization far exceeds our current capacity. Acknowledging this, the Rewrite Beautiful board of directors and I have mindfully chosen to celebrate all that Rewrite Beautiful has accomplished and dissolve the organization at the end of 2015.
I would like to personally thank all of our donors, board members, Beautiful Actionistas, and volunteers who have given so generously to Rewrite Beautiful. Your dedication has changed many lives for the better. Here are just a few of the things you have helped make possible:
1. According to our stats, we kicked ass at educating on eating disorders and changing the way people see beauty. Since 2010, we have educated over 6,000 people. After our school programs, students as young as 10 years old reported:
▪ Having greater knowledge about the harm of eating disorders than before the program.
▪ Being able to name local eating disorder recovery resources.
▪ Feeling more compassion for people struggling with mental illness.
▪ A change in their idea of what makes themselves and others beautiful.
2. We made the taboo cool. We creatively engaged people in the conversation about eating disorders by:
▪ Hosting 3 art shows, highlighting the work of 20 Southern California artists.
▪ Teaching 12 street art workshops to over 300 participants.
▪ Supporting 12 Beautiful Action Clubs across the USA and Korea.
▪ Publishing a book and workbook that is now used as narrative therapy in addiction rehabs.
In total you have helped us work with over 42 different groups and organizations.
3. We changed the course of many lives. One that sticks out to me is Julia Schaeffer, a program participant who said,
“I struggled with bulimia for 6 years. The disease told me that I am worthless, ugly and a burden. But, the night I met Irvina through Rewrite Beautiful my life completely changed. For the first time ever, I realized that I had a disease and that there are people who understand my struggle and want to help. Before this evening, I had no idea there was a way out of this nightmare. This organization saved my life.”
I think that calls for a slow clap for all of us.
As an organization that has focussed on prevention, we have voted to donate our remaining funds to Teen Line: a non-profit that prevents teenage suicide. We chose Teen Line because eating disorders are the most deadly of mental illnesses, these deaths are due to suicides and heart attacks. The rest of our goods (art supplies, books and t-shirts) will be donated to Orangewood Children’s Home and The Salvation Army. Also aligning with the Rewrite Beautiful mission to create a better future for our youth and provide rehabilitation to those struggling with addiction.
My hope for all of you is that you continue to live out the Rewrite Beautiful message. One way I personally do this is every morning I think through what’s on my schedule and then I visualize how I will use my creativity, kindness, and strength that day. When I am mindful to carry out these actions, I see myself and others in a more beautiful way. You should try it-it has actually been statistically proven to make the world the kind of place we all want to be in :) As for me, I’ll be making art, writing, and pondering the next universal truth. If you'd like to connect with me, you can do so in the universal photo booth, Instagram @IrvinaKanarek.
Founder + Rewriter-In-Chief
Today we worked with clients and parents at Center For Discovery in Newport Beach, an eating disorder rehab specializing in treatment for those 18 years old and younger. It's a privilege to play a part in helping people rewrite their stories. A special thanks to our supporters who make this work possible and to the clinicians working day in and day out against this disease.
In case you missed it Rewrite Beautiful was featured on the TV show, Joy in Our Town! It was an awesome opportunity to get the word out about eating disorders and bring some attention to prevention! A special thanks to the lovely Michelle Smith, LVN the Program Director of The Victorian, eating disorder treatment center for speaking about the mental and physical components of eating disorders. Also, a super special thanks to our very own Board Member, the remarkable Robyn Baker who gave her eating disorder testimony! These two women made this a well rounded show! I admire both of you for the work you do so other girls and women can also Rewrite Beautiful for themselves. Now we just need to figure out how to get on to Ellen together ;) xoxo!
Rewrite Beautiful is so stoked to announce that we are being featured in the Lifestyle + Charity SHOP this week! That means that every purchase from 10/31 through 11/06 will be combined and 10% of that total will go to Rewrite Beautiful! Please check out the Lifestyle + Charity SHOP and see if you can get a head start on some Christmas gifts, birthday gifts or maybe find something just for your BEAUTIFUL self :) Thanks for the support beauty's! Happy Shopping!
Keepin' it Beautiful,
Yup, you heard that right! Rewrite Beautiful has traveled down under (well, sort of…via the world wide web that is :) ) But, nevertheless Rewrite Beautiful is inspiring Kerin of Australia to CHANGE how she see’s beauty in herself and others. She says the following on her blog: A Space to Create, "This blog is a space for me explore creatively to express how beauty lives within each of us and can be experienced everyday in the world around us. My Blog will consist of my photos and inspirations that reflect the beauty I see within the people I know and meet, but more importantly the beauty of the world I live in. I am using creativity to teach beautiful as an action."
I found out a couple of weeks ago that Kerin stumbled upon Rewrite Beautiful via the web and was so inspired by the message that she decided to make her own blog dedicated to finding the true beauty in herself and her friends. How rad is that?! I checked out her blog and it’s rad. She features pictures of her friends, nature, animals and writes the qualities she finds beautiful about them. It’s a true ‘Rewrite’ Blog and I just love it! I hope Kerin inspires you to also find your own little 'Rewrite' niche in the world whether it’s through a blog, writing, art, street art or photography! It's so rad to see people wanting to ‘Rewrite’ with us!
Keepin’ it Beautiful,
A few weeks ago Rewrite Beautiful was invited to join Redemption Church at ‘Party on the Block’. Party on the Block is a ministry of Redemption that goes to Shalimar Street in Costa Mesa, CA and literally brings church to about 50 at-risk kids and families. The usual ‘party routine’ Redemption hosts is lunch, a bible story teaching and fun! Bringing Rewrite Beautiful into the mix made things a little different for everyone. So we whipped out our spray can of CREATIVITY and got crackin’!
* Rewrite Beautiful is not a ‘Christian organization’ but, quite a few of our volunteers are big fans of Mr.Jesus….hmmmm….
Creative Solution: We decided to do this Street Art Workshop around the Bible Story of Esther. Which would still give the kiddo’s their Sunday Bible story AND get to hear the Rewrite Beautiful message that beauty is in your Creativity, Kindness and Strength!
*Rewrite Beautiful USUALLY uses Street Art in all of our workshops, but when kids create something they want to take it home….hmmm….
Creative Solution: So many Rewrite Beautiful Workshop participants rave about how amazing it is to make Street Art and know that their art is going to be seen by tons of people. However, since the whole point of Rewrite Beautiful is to CHANGE how YOU see beauty in yourself we thought the message would sink in more for the kids if they got to take something home. Therefore we created masks: “Fake Masks.” The masks played into the story of Esther and how she was ‘fake’ about who she was. We had the kids draw on the masks their ‘fake self’ who they really aren’t but act like, (For example: Hitting their sister, stealing, cussing. This isn’t who they were created to be.) Then we had the kids take off their “fake selves” and reveal their ‘true BEAUTIFUL selves’ in a mirror. It was EPIC! The kids REALLY got it.
*Rewrite Beautiful usually had everyone collaborate on ONE piece of art, but we have 50 kids….hmmm….
Creative Solution: In order to save time and precious money from our donors we decided to Go Green! And create masks out of old cereal boxes.
It was a long process, but it was totally worth it to watch the kids write/draw about their ‘fake self’ and reveal their ‘true BEAUTIFUL selves’
Our Street Art Workshop Leader Sunny Siu even made a mask of his ‘fake self”. He’s a pretty strong guy underneath though.
He lead an amazing workshop with Michelle McCormick. Check back soon for more pictures from this awesome workshop! And don’t forget to Go Green! And Keep it BEATUIFUL!
Thank you to everyone who came out to support Rewrite Beautiful's 1st Annual Art Show : TELEIOS . For those who missed it, here is a little recap of the BEAUTY of the night....
Everyone was welcomed to CHANGE how they see beauty in themselves and others through viewing the art that was created with the Rewrite Beautiful Vision in mind: "Girls and women are beautiful for their ACTIONS of Creativity, Kindness and Strength."
People were asked to go through the gallery and ask themselves 4 Questions:
1.) Pick an element of the art work that you like most and draw it on your square
2.) Think of a woman that has qualities that are beautiful write down those qualities on your square
3.) If you could choose one quality that the media would consider beautiful what would it be?
4.) What quality makes you beautiful?
Check out how many people responded to the artwork from TELEIOS!
We love reading their answers...
So many BEAUTIFUL artists from Orange County, California participated in creating art work for the show. Thank you!
The artwork by Sunny Siu was a crowd talker....
Jessica Burkhart always impresses too....
Emily Cobett did some LIVE Art for us on a Surfboard!
Felicidad De Lucas, a Spanish artist brought a surreal aspect to women's beauty....
Tom Cutter impressed with his silhouettes....
Elana Grace shared some amazing shadow boxes....
The poetry by Jeannette Encinias blew everyone away...
Welcome to the PARTY at FIND Art Magazine & Gallery....
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AND ...thank you Rich Lander of CHARD Photographer for donating your BEAUTIFUL photography skills! You're BEAUTIFUL!
Thank you to everyone who came out to see the show, volunteer and show your support!
See you next year for the 2nd Annual Rewrite Beautiful Art Show!
Good Night Beautiful!
I don’t know about you, but I so don’t dig hearing about eating disorders in the news cause I feel like only half the story is told. I feel like 97% of the time it’s about some celebrity that’s lookin’ a little bony or has gained some weight, but nobody ever talks about what an eating disorder is, how deadly they are or how to get help. It bums me out because eating disorders are a real, gnarly disease, that shouldn't be treated like an entertaining high speed pursuit that’s just fun to watch and poke fun at. So NOT cool in the Rewrite Beautiful school! But, then there are people like Jacinthe Veillette a 19 year old from Quebec, Canada that makes some beautiful changes around town!
Jacinthe has personally struggled with anorexia, but instead of letting the disease kill her, she fought it for herself and still fights it for others. Jacinthe has made body image and eating disorder awareness her personal mission on this earth, which is why this CREATIVE, KIND and STRONG girl is our Beautiful Girl of the Week!
Jacinthe used her CREATIVITY while sharing her personal experiences with an eating disorder, then went a step further: She created a petition denouncing homogeneous standards of beauty in fashion and the media.
Jacinthe collected more than 2,000 signatures and submitted the petition to the provincial minister responsible for the status of women. This resulted in the ministry creating a charter in 2009 encouraging healthy and diverse body images, and Jacinthe was asked to help create a website and to be the spokesperson for the charter! Sounds like a STRONG chick to us!
Today, she feels there is more discussion about body image issues and eating disorders, at least in Quebec.
Jacinthe not only invests in eating disorder awareness, but this KIND girl also has a heart for bringing her talents to use with Marche Mondiale des Femmes, an international movement to improve the condition of women, fundraising to help children with cancer and international humanitarian efforts in Africa (BTW: What is up with so many of our Beautiful Girls of the Week being obsessed with Africa! i.e. Mary and Lindsey. I’ve never been, but it must be a beautiful country, cause it has some beautiful girls that care about it!) . Jacinthe hopes to one day enter the field of Social Work. In the meantime she still travels to schools, colleges and universities talking about eating disorders and beauty. We’re not sure exactly what she says in her native tongue of French, but we’re pretty sure that whatever it is, it doesn’t change the fact that this young lady is a BEAUTIFUL girl! Thank you for BEING beautiful Jacinthe!
Keepin’ it Beautiful!
Rewrite Beautiful with volunteer CT, rocked the awesome Street Art Women’s Pride created at their Rewrite Beautiful Street Art Workshop. We displayed at The Santa Ana Artists District inSanta Ana,CA. The women created this art to embody their own visions of journeying from the dark, ugly, pain we believe we are (symbolized by the black silhouette covered in mud, dead leaves and rocks) into who we truly are; beautiful (the green silhouette with the heart and wings). Women’s Pride wanted people to participate in their Street Art and ‘Rewrite Beautiful’ themselves, so they added a line of small paper hearts joined between the two silhouettes. The hearts were to be used by viewers to write what they found beautiful in themselves. Results? Beautiful heart-tastic! Check it out….
Here's what some participants had to say...