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CVRAN’s Annual March Arts Marathon

Artist and writer Nicola Morris is one of the participating artists in the Central Vermont Refugee Action Network’s annual fundraiser, the “March Arts Marathon.” This image, a detail of one of Morris’ watercolors, is courtesy of the artist.
For the last three years, the Central Vermont Refugee Action Network (CVRAN) has held a March Arts Marathon to raise funds to support the asylum seekers and refugees who have relocated to Vermont. 

Last year, more than $68,000 was raised, and this year the network is looking to increase that amount in order to provide help with housing, living expenses, and legal fees for the 19 asylum seekers and nine Afghan refugees it is currently assisting.

The Central Vermont Refugee Action Network has dedicated itself to creating welcoming communities for asylum seekers, refugees, and migrant workers. To date, the grassroots organization has sponsored a total of 20 asylum seekers from Central and South America, Africa, and Russia. 

Volunteers at the nonprofit network help welcome these new Americans by providing host families; raising funds for basic living expenses; helping with registrations and school enrollment; and providing transportation to appointments, schools, and stores. They also assist by providing driving lessons and help with the purchasing of cars. 

In order to continue this work, the organization has invited the public to participate in its annual March Arts Marathon as either an artist or as a sponsor.

Artists such as painters, writers, poets, musicians, sculptors, photographers, or multimedia artists who are interested in participating can register up through the end of February at cvran.org/#mam. Participating artists commit to inviting friends, family, and neighbors to sponsor the art they will be working on each day during the month of March. 

Currently, 30 participating artists have registered and will be exhibiting artwork created using the following mediums: water color, paint, ink illustrations, digital illustration, block prints, collage, animation, multimedia, photography, fiber, writing, poetry, song, and voice. To see the art that was created over the last few years, please visit the gallery at cvran.org/gallery. 

If you are interested in sponsoring one or more artists, you can also visit cvran.org/#mam. You will see a list of participating artists, along with a small blurb about why the artist is participating and what they will be creating. Website visitors can select an artist to sponsor and fill out a simple form for a one-time donation. After signing up, the artist is notified about the sponsorship. In return, sponsors will receive outreach (email, blog, instagram, etc.) from the artist that includes pictures or files showcasing their art, as well as possible writings or musings that describe the artist’s process. 

For additional information about the marathon, please contact Nicola Morris at nicolamorris@mac.com. Those interested in additional ways to support CVRAN can donate to the organization at cvran.org/donate or sign up to be a volunteer at cvran.org/volunteer-registration.