What began with a simple, small act of kindness has grown to become an extremely generous gesture of assistance to those in need of it. Read on to discover how you can also be involved in this exciting event, and what it will mean for the residents of the Foyer St Antoine.
There was a request from the Facebook page Giving at Lux of clothing for a family who had just arrived in Luxembourg with only the clothes on their back. You’re right in thinking that this isn’t your typical expat arrival story, however it is probably more common than you realise as people flee their own countries and apply for refugee status in the Grand Duchy. Gabriela Murino answered this request, and so began her journey with the Foyer St Antoine where people live temporarily while they wait to find out whether or not they will receive refugee status and remain living here.
“Being relatively new to Luxembourg, I was surprised to learn of these Foyers so close to us, housing asylum seekers coming from dire circumstances in war-torn countries. Charity often seems far away, represented by images on television or requests through the post for donations. But this is different. This is happening here. Many of us are, in one way or another, immigrants here. We have struggled or struggle to varying degrees, especially at first – far from family and friends, with a new language and culture. Yet the challenges the families of asylum seekers face are greater and more frightening than we can even begin to imagine”
As well as being involved with giving donations, and the British Ladies Club preparation and delivery of Christmas gift bags for all the residents last year, Gabriela has taken it upon herself to organise a charity event with €10 from every €15 ticket, and 10% of each exhibited painting sold, going directly to an education fund for the children of the Foyer St Antoine. The paintings are the work of her talented late mother, AnaMaria Turdera Esnaola, otherwise known as AMTE.
Argentinian-born AMTE, who during her life spent time living in Argentina and New York, was an optimist, generous of heart and spirit. Her art sprang spontaneously after winning a serious health battle and healing totally at the age of 59, after which she lived in an even deeper state of appreciation for life. Without ever having had a lesson she picked up some paints and brushes and began painting on cardboard, on paper, on canvas – whatever was at hand. AMTE returned once again to Argentina in 2004 and continued painting until her sudden passing at the age of nearly 73.
In the 12 years since she had started to paint, AMTE created 500 works, 200 of which remain with her family and are now rarely exhibited. She worked in acrylic and water paints and had several exhibits in New York, Holland and Argentina, winning prizes for her work. Her painting passion began at the age of 60 and is testament to what can happen when we embrace life and the now fully, and open our arms to the creative vibrations just waiting to come through us.
“Linking this fundraiser for the children of asylum seekers at the FSA to AMTE’s art is something she would have been firmly behind, moved by, and immensely proud of. Indeed, it is my hope that her vast generous spirit will permeate the event and manifest in bringing some soothing healing to the lives of those children.”
So be a part of the Vernissage and fundraising on the Mosel Opening Exhibit of the Art of AMTE, and purchase your tickets now!
Tickets: €15 (includes a raffle entry to win one of two AMTE paintings, coupe and canapes). Purchase tickets through the Facebook page here.
Where: SCHLINK Wäistuff Deisermill on Route du Vin
When: 19 June from 19:00-21:00
Further information: See the Vernissage Facebook page, or the AMTE Artist Facebook page.
Please note that tickets are limited, so be in quick to secure your place.
“The world is a dangerous place; not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing.” —Albert Einstein
Special message from Gabriela: Big thank you from me for helping to realize this event to Bex Stapleford, Erica Gwynne, Katie Bull and Rebecca Binks; to all the ladies of the BLC-special mention Philippa Wilson, Becky Gollackner, Scarlett Chapman-Nunn & Stefania Brunetti. Special thanks to the Schlink Family and to all those who purchased a ticket!
Featured Photo: Gabriela Murino - this photo has been cropped.