Arts For Smiles Hosts 2023 Back To School Drive

Faye Ford, Jeremiah Ballenger, Art for Smiles founder Carolina King, Gaby Ballenger, Brianna and Alexandra Garcia, and Sophie Nelson, and (back row) Charles Moses and Lois Spatz

Brand-new backpacks will bring smiles to more than 170 children this year as Arts for Smiles Inc. completed its third annual Back to School Drive, delivering backpacks for children in need at several locations in Palm Beach County.

The backpacks were filled with notebooks, pencils, binders, crayons, markers, glue, ruler, folders and paper, and directly delivered to Belle Glade’s Ella’s Closet and Light House Café, teachers at Lake Worth’s North Grade Elementary, and a few local families in need that reached out directly to the organization.

Donations for this year’s drive came through Facebook fundraisers, Amazon wish list donations, and the largest donation coming from Wireless Vision (a T-Mobile company), which donated 58 backpacks and various school supplies.

Arts For Smiles is a Wellington nonprofit organization that began as a grassroots effort with a mission to connect local artists with the community to bring joy through art, culture and education directly to children facing adversity in Palm Beach County.

Now that this year’s Back to School campaign is complete, Arts for Smiles will start preparing for its first art exhibition, the Joy of Art, set for Nov. 11-12, which will feature local artists, live music and a book reading of Life and Lilly by Lilly Pulitzer’s granddaughter Lilly Leas Ferreira.

To learn more about Arts for Smiles’ upcoming exhibition, or to see how you can become a partner, sponsor or volunteer, visit