A Painting of Her Favorite Picture of Her Husband

Toni-Rae from Arizona painted a life like portrait of a wife’s favorite photo of her husband of 40 years who passed away due to COVID-19.

Toni-Rae was left struggling with finding employment during the COVID-19 pandemic . As part of the inaugural class of our Unemployment Transition Program, Toni chose to complete her capstone project to help Pam who we connected her with. Pam lost her husband Bruce of 40 years due to COVID-19 and was kind enough to share her favorite photo of him. Toni-Rae used this image to create a beautiful portrait painting for Pam.

Lessons Learned

Q. How do you feel this project affected the family or individual you helped? 

 I really hope that this small sentiment of condolence helps Pam in her time of mourning and self-healing. This capstone project has helped me to understand the necessity of continuing to give back to others, and also the importance of Keeping your word because I said I would.

Q. How did the project help you?

This capstone project has been a very thought-provoking project for myself. It is always difficult to go through a loss of life for any family. Being able to help or at least give back to the chosen person Pam, and the loss of her husband, was not only emotional but it really made me reflect again on how precious life is, and how as humanity with even not knowing a person directly can still impact the “impacted” and those that are comforting. It has shown and proven to me again how as humans we are all connected and impacted by how we interact with others. Much of what we learned in the class and weekly workshops of mindset and commitment has helped me throughout this project, and then I had to push myself to meet deadlines.

Q. What advice would you give to other people who are comforting a bereaved family/individual? 

I was able to reflect as I worked on the project to work each and every day like it could be your last as we are not promised tomorrow. The project was difficult at first as it was hard to even choose how I could contribute to the family or person chosen. After I established and overcame that I was going to give to her the best way I could possible and overcome my self-sabotaging mindset and fear of whether or not its good enough the creative process took over and my skills and talents of what I was good at were in effect.

Toni graduated from our October 2020 Cohort.

If you or someone you know is unemployed due to Covid-19, see if our Unemployment Transition Program is right for you. Additionally, if you have lost a loved one to COVID-19 and would like to be a recipient of one of our participant’s capstone project, please look at our Bereavement Support Page to sign up.