The Steele Foundation Donates $250,000 to Free Arts Building Hope Capital Campaign

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Free Arts for Abused Children of Arizona is pleased to announce The Steele Foundation has donated $250,000 to their Building Hope Capital Purchase and Renovation Campaign which will transform 352 East Camelback Road from a nondescript office building to a center for art and transformation.  The new art room will be named after The Steele Foundation.  


“We are so appreciative of The Steele Foundation’s support and commitment to our mission,” said Alicia Sutton Campbell, executive director, Free Arts.  “With the gift from The Steele Foundation we have raised $3,650,000 of our $4,500,000 goal.  We are in the final stretch of our campaign and it’s exciting to see our dream coming to fruition.”


The new center will allow Free Arts to confidently expand programs to serve thousands of additional children and families.  It will explore and establish best practices for using the arts and mentoring with children who have experienced trauma.  And it will showcase artwork and stories that foster a deeper understanding of children who have experienced the trauma of abuse or homelessness. Free Arts projects that more than 66,000 people will use the renovated building over a 10-year period.


“We were excited by this project that will ensure Free Arts ability to expand the scope and depth of their incredible programs,” said Marianne Cracchiolo Mago, president of The Steele Foundation. “We know that with this new home many more children will be able to experience the healing power of the arts.  We are so happy to be a partner in this expansion.” 

Additionally, the building will allow for program, staff, and volunteer growth.  It will create a hub where the people and the organizations that constitute the child well-being community can come together for learning, knowledge-sharing, creating, and program delivery.  Free Arts will utilize the building to engage more deeply with its existing and expanding network of nonprofits, agencies, and community members that seek to prevent trauma, build resilience, and/or improve the lives of foster care and homeless children in Arizona and nationally. The new building is set to be complete by February 2020. 


Building Hope History

In August 2016, Free Arts entered into a lease/purchase agreement with the owners of 352 East Camelback Road.  Reasons for choosing this location included:

·        More than doubles the space of the prior Free Arts office;

·        Size allows for staff growth and program expansion over the next ten years;

·        Location on a major thoroughfare increases visibility;

·        Central location is convenient for program participants, volunteers, and the community to gather;

·        Easy access to light rail and bus lines;

·        A unique building design could become a landmark for art and transformation.


About The Steele Foundation
The Steele Foundation invests in children by supporting both traditional and alternative opportunities that educate, empower and enrich their lives. Established in 1980, the Foundation provides funding to nonprofit organizations in Arizona that focus on core education and initiatives that integrate 21st  century literacies in the arts and humanities.


About Free Arts for Abused Children of Arizona

Founded in 1993, Free Arts for Abused Children of Arizona is a non-profit organization which heals homeless and abused children through artistic expression. Free Arts programs include creative elements that promote safety, self-expression and a sense of belonging. Free Arts programs are delivered by 900 volunteer mentors and artists who serve more than 8,000 children annually through partnerships with 43 social service child welfare agencies at 100+ sites across Maricopa County. For more information on Free Arts, visit:


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