Valour Community Centre (VCC) is hosting free drop-in art workshops throughout the summer despite being faced with a robbery.

Art City is a not-for-profit community art studio dedicated to providing people of all ages with innovative and professional art programming, and it is in charge of leading the free drop-in art workshops at VCC's Clifton site.

"Adrien Sala, our MLA for St. James, and asked us if we would be interested in hosting a gree drop-in art program through Art City. He would provide the funding through a grant that they've had," says Liz Jackimec, President of the Volunteer Board at VCC. "He had done this for another community centre in St. James and it was hugely successful. So, he asked us if we would be interested in that and we said absolutely because we love programming and especially free programming for people. He got the money together and the funding together and put us in touch with Art City and it worked out great."

The drop-in art workshops run every Wednesday from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., at VCC's Clifton site on Strathcona Street.

"There is a huge emphasis on activity and sports and outdoor things, which is great because kids need exercise, they need to be outside. But not every kid wants to play sports, so things like arts and music and that kind of stuff tend to get lost when we put so much emphasis on sport. So, when you have an art program and then on top of it a free art program, you get a lot of interest in it."

The drop-in workshop is a great space for kids to express themselves and make a mess in a way that parents would not allow at home. Jackimec also notes that this drop-in provides an opportunity for low-income families who would not be able to afford a program.

"It's a drop-in program and doesn't require any registration and it's also free. We are also opening the door to the children whose families might not be able to afford a program or might not have the time to register their children or things. Therefore, these kids can still come and enjoy the program."

The drop-in program director from Art City told Jackimec that despite dealing with a theft the program is not affected in any way. Details on the robbery have not been disclosed at this time.

As of right now, the free art program can only sustain 25 children due to the adult-child ratio, and Jackimec says that they have had to turn kids away because of its popularity. She hopes that this drop-in program can grow larger so that kids do not need to be turned away and all can join.

For information on Art City and its programs, visit its website.

For information on Valour Community Centre and its programs, visit its website.