A Project to Create Lifelong Memories

Rocks Share Artistic Talent

LC Newton, Staff Reporter

One thing that people in the United States take for granted is seeing themselves in a mirror, in photographs and in portraits every day. Many kids around the world don’t get this opportunity.  To change this situation for a few young people, Trinity art/photography teacher Mr. Jimmy Serochi and some students decided to participate in the Memory Project.

Ms. Mariney Ocampo, Syria Project Specialist, contacted Trinity Principal Dan Zoeller about working with the Memory Project, which she describes as “a children’s art charity that is based in the US but conducts art activities with children around the world (memoryproject.org).”

Ocampo wrote: “I’m actually writing to you from Jordan, where I’ve spent the last two months photographing Syrian children living in Azraq and Za’atari, the largest Syrian refugee camps. We’re now looking for art students to study these photos and create portraits as special gifts for the children. We delivered portraits to a first group of Syrian children in February (2017), and it was a tremendous success.  Here is a short three-minute video: memoryproject.org/videos Now there are many more children here who would love to receive such personal, heartfelt gifts.  Might your students be interested in helping to create their portraits?

“We will email you digital photos of the children’s faces and mail you full-page color prints of the same photos.  We will also mail you plastic sleeves to protect the finished portraits (we will deliver the portraits to the children in these same sleeves).”

Serochi said, “(The Memory Project) is a nice project to be part of.” Serochi plans to recreate his photograph using colored pencils.

When asked if he thinks the children will like the artwork, he said, “Because these kids rarely see themselves, I think (they) will love the artwork. One reason I chose to participate in this project is because I did it when I was in high school as well, and I loved it.”

Trinity junior Richard Gregor, who plans to edit his photo in Photoshop, said, “I chose to do this project because I really care about art. Being able to share my work with others who care about it really means a lot.”

Junior Nick Loper plans to recreate his photograph by using either watercolor or pastels. He chose to do this project because “it sounded pretty neat.”

Ocampo explained how the project provides a keepsake for those who take part: “We will make a video of the Syrian children receiving the portraits in large group settings in February.  Then, we will produce a copy of that video thanking you, your students, and your school for your efforts.  You will then be welcome to share that video with your school community as a way of highlighting the accomplishments of your art program and the happiness of the less fortunate.”



Trinity art teacher Mr. Jimmy Serochi talks about Trinity’s involvement in the Memory Project. ………………video by LC Newton.