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It’s indispensable, priceless and precious and that’s exactly why you should be giving it away. What am I talking about? Time, of course! Now, before you get all riled up and tell me that I was just explaining to you how very important time is, please hear me out...

Yes, time is a vital part of life and hard to come by these days. No one knows this better than I do! As the marketing and events director at Sedona Arts Center, I have very little time to spare. Between preparing for classes, organizing and writing for the upcoming Sedona Plein Air Festival and every gallery event we have each month - my time is invaluable. I can’t honestly remember the last time I actually had time to spare. Between all my work, my writing, creating art and the precious moments I share with my family - I have a full plate. But because my time is valuable – is exactly why I am giving it away, and so should you!

I recently signed up to volunteer at my son’s school. So once a week, I skip a lunch and use that “extra” time to help out the K-2 art class. I get to do all sorts of fun things like play with clay and encourage the children to use their imaginations. I help them put on aprons, hand out supplies and clean up after. I’m quiet when the teacher asks and follow instructions very well – setting a fine example for the other children. I don’t charge by the hour or demand a return. I simply enjoy my stolen moment in time with a group of fantastic children, learning to express themselves through art. Not only do I get to see my son growing and learning in school (a rare treat for a parent), but I get to see your children growing and learning, too. Being a part of that process is absolutely immeasurable.

With budget cuts and set-backs all over the nation: schools, teachers, and families are all trying to find ways to make art (and everything else) work. And let me tell you, we need all the help we can get. It’s not only the neighborhood schools that need your help. Art centers, nonprofits, and the community in general could use your free time as well. I bet you could find a dozen organizations that could use a helping hand right now. Places like the Sedona Public Library, Sedona Community Center, NORAZ Poets, Sedona Historical Society, Yavapai Big Brothers and Big Sisters, and even The City of Sedona are always looking for volunteers. And we need people like you, who say you don’t have the extra time to spare, to lend a hand. Because it’s people like you that set an example for everyone else – it’s people like you that help bring us all together.

I’m lucky enough to be around a wonderful group of individuals that are always volunteering their time to the Arts Center and local community. Not only do they share their time and expertise, but they also create fundraisers and outreach programs that benefit all of us. These people set an astounding example that makes everyone want to do even more. But I’ve learned that there isn’t a lot of time in the day to get everything done. So I offer what I can – when I can. And there’s nothing wrong with that. Imagine if we all volunteered just one hour a week – how that could add up! Is your time so valuable that it can’t be given away? No one could truly say yes.

Life is more precious than the money we seek to make day in and day out. The people and children of the community will only do better to know you and share their time with you. We can all continue to help build this beautiful place we call home by offering it the most precious commodity of all:

You and me

 

Remember: grow; learn; conserve; preserve; create; question; educate; change; and free your mind.

About: Kelli Klymenko is an artist, a faculty member and the Marketing & Events Coordinator at Sedona Arts Center: a gathering place where artists can learn, teach, and exhibit their works at the center’s School of the Arts and Fine Art Gallery in uptown Sedona.


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About our Blogger

kelliklymenko

"Kelli Klymenko is an artist, storyteller, photographer, teacher, yogi, husband, father, science aficionado, marketing director for Sedona Arts Center and free thinker - experiencing life in one of the most inspiring and picturesque places on earth with his fabulous wife and children. “Remember: grow; learn; conserve; preserve; create; question; educate; change; and free your mind.” – KelliKlymenko.com"

 

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