Art program catering to adults with disabilities in Virginia Beach opens greeting card store

ability center making cards.jpg
Posted at 2:50 PM, Nov 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-23 14:00:37-05

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – An art program that caters to adults with disabilities now has a shop that’s open to the public.

On Wednesday, the Ability Center of Virginia, a nonprofit organization serving individuals with disabilities, held a ribbon-cutting ceremony and open house for its ArtWorks retail store.

The ArtWorks program offers an opportunity for these men and women to create and sell original greeting cards.

“We get to spread the joy out in our community and to the world,” said Cathy Scarborough, the program manager for ArtWorks. “We have a good time, but we work hard. We put our abilities to work.”

Maddy Beardsley discovered the Ability Center over the summer.

“I love it,” Beardsley exclaimed. When asked what she loves about the center, she replied, “Being able to make new friends and be myself.”

ACVA provides daily programming, but the cards are made on Wednesdays.

The store is located at 5825 Arrowhead Drive in Virginia Beach and will be open Wednesdays from 10 a.m. through 2 p.m. and by appointment.

The handmade greeting cards are also sold in a number of retail stores throughout Hampton Roads, including the following:

  • Cottage LunaSea
  • The Royal Chocolate
  • Lewis Accounting and Tax Services
  • Sugar Plum Bakery
  • Hickory Trading Post
  • Read Books at the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art
  • REACH, Inc.

Michelle Prendergast, executive director for the Ability Center of Virginia, says ArtWorks' cardmakers can also customize orders to include designs such as company logos.

After this News 3 story aired, the Ability Center said it has already made a big impact! Since the ribbon cutting, they have sold close to $2,000! This includes in store sales, online, craft shows and a few donations. "It's been a very successful couple weeks and we look forward to many more. Customers were so touched by your story," the center's Executive Director said.

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