Lo­cal artist hon­ored for years of vol­un­teer work

For years Nancy Thomp­son has taught art to ju­ve­nile of­fend­ers

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - FRONT PAGE - By Michael P. Rel­la­han mrel­la­han@21st-cen­tu­ry­media.com @Ch­escoCourtNews on Twit­ter To con­tact staff writer Michael P. Rel­la­han call 610-696-1544.

Nancy Thomp­son of West Goshen has vol­un­teered count­less hours to teach art to ju­ve­nile of­fend­ers.

WEST CH­ESTER >> Care, con­cern, and com­pas­sion.

Those three words were used to de­scribe lo­cal artist Nancy Thomp­son’s ap­proach to vol­un­teer work she was hon­ored for re­cently at the Ch­ester County Youth Cen­ter with ju­ve­nile of­fend­ers.

“I truly con­sider it a priv­i­lege to be here” to show ap­pre­ci­a­tion for Thomp­son’s work, said cen­ter di­rec­tor Gary Blair at the Oct. 26 county com­mis­sion­ers’ meet­ing, at which she was awarded a ci­ta­tion for her many years of work at the cen­ter.

Thomp­son, of West Goshen, helped those teenagers at the cen­ter cre­ate murals in an all-pur­pose room de­pict­ing land and sky and sea, as well as a jazz jam ses­sion, said Blair. “It was amaz­ing to see the works in progress, and the way (the youths) bought into ev­ery­thing,” he said. “We’ve got some tough kids in there. This is a great thing to rec­og­nize.”

Thank­ing the com­mis­sion­ers for the ci­ta­tion, Thomp­son ex­pressed mod­esty. “One per­son is not re­spon­si­ble for all that hap­pened there,” said the widow of for­mer state se­na­tor and county com­mis­sioner Robert Thomp­son. “It is the staff that works to­gether.”

The ci­ta­tion, signed by all three com­mis­sion­ers, states that Thomp­son’s “artis­tic tal­ent and love of teach­ing art, com­bined with her com­mit­ment to serv­ing the young peo­ple … has led to the com­ple­tion of a four-part mu­ral cre­ated by Nancy, with sig­nif­i­cant artis­tic con­tri­bu­tions by the youth.

“The art­work has helped the cen­ter’s young peo­ple dis­cover their artis­tic tal­ents while ex­pe­ri­enc­ing team­work and a boost to their self-es­teem,” it read. “Thanks to Nancy’s con­tri­bu­tions, the mu­ral is now, and will con­tinue to be a pos­i­tive talk­ing piece for the Ch­ester County Youth Cen­ter res­i­dents and staff dur­ing meal times and pro­gram times.”

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