Photo credit: Warrior Writers on Facebook.

As part of a new Q&A series, we will be getting to know the Bartol Foundation’s 2018 grantees. Warrior Writers works to create a culture that articulates veterans’ experiences, build a collaborative community for artistic expression, and bear witness to war and the full range of military experiences. They received a $7,500 Bartol grant for their Veterans and Iraqis video project.

These questions were answered by Lovella Calica, founder and director of Warrior Writers.


When do you know your work is making a difference?

When people keep coming back, when people are excited about it, when there’s smiles and laughter and friendship growing.


What is the coolest thing a participant in your program ever said to you?

This organization/community saved/saves my life.


What is the most important thing you do to help your teaching artists do their best work?

Believe in them, struggle with them, grow with them, keep working at it even when it’s hard.


What is the best tip you can give to someone doing arts education programs like yours?

Take care of yourself, model it, teach it, do it with each other and participants. Think about and do and embody community care and self-care.


If you could magically change one thing to make your program better, what would it be?

More money of course – more staff, programming, less stress and worry!


What is your favorite field trip? (Real or imagined.)

The Philippines with my whole family, still dreaming…


Best.  Snack. Ever.

Fresh cold cherries and mangos.

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